Lease with mall, first construction contract signed by Mason City’s mayor for River City Renaissance project

first_imgMASON CITY — Mason City’s mayor says the first steps of the River City Renaissance project are officially underway with the signing of the first construction contract as well as a lease with Southbridge Mall.The City Council last week approved a revised lease agreement with the mall owner. The lease agreement is for an initial 20-year term, followed by four subsequent five-year terms for a total of 40 years. The cost of the lease starts at $199,000 a year for the first five years, increasing by 10-percent each subsequent five-year period.Mayor Bill Schickel says the mall owner agreed to the council’s amendments, including that back taxes be paid prior to any lease payments being made. “You might remember that lease includes provisions that no money will be paid in terms of that lease until all of the taxes are current on the mall.”Schickel says the contract has been finalized with Dean Snyder Construction of Clear Lake dealing with the demolition of the interior of the former JC Penney store area where a multi-purpose center will be constructed. “I’ve signed a contract for the first construction bid. Construction should be getting underway shortly in JC Penney area where the multi-purpose center will be built.”Some concern was raised at last week’s council meeting that the city did not meet the minimum requirements for posting the notice as part of the bid letting process. Schickel says a review shows the city followed the necessary requirements. “You may have heard that there were some technical issues with the bidding process. We’ve consulted with the experts. We’ve consulted with our staff and legal counsel. They informed us that the statutes were indeed complied with, and various deadlines were met. So we’re excited to be moving forward.”The city is currently accepting bids for the second construction package for the arena, which includes the structural steel, concrete foundation and ice plant components of the facility. Bids are due on January 31st, with the council scheduled to approve a winning bidder at their February 5th meeting.last_img read more


CENTAL Wants President Weah’s Assets, Others Published

first_imgCENTAL program manager, Gerald D. Yeakula. The Center for Transparency and Accountability in Liberia (CENTAL) has called on the Liberian Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC) to timely and independently verify and publish all declared assets, income and liabilities, including those of President George M. Weah.In a statement issued on Monday, CENTAL said it is glad to acknowledge receipt of reports of declaration of assets, income, and liabilities by President George Manneh Weah, which the General Auditing Commission (GAC) has confirmed.Although it is belated, CENTAL lauded President Weah for declaring his assets in compliance with chapter 10 of the 2014 Code of Conduct for Public officials that requires all public officials to declare their assets.“This is one of several steps that demonstrate concrete commitment and political will to set the necessary condition for a successful fight against corruption in Liberia,” the statement said.CENTAL has also called on the Vice President, members of the Senate and House of Representatives, Justices of the Supreme Court and other officials of government to do likewise.“We maintain that former officials accused of corrupt acts, especially those of the immediate past regime, must be investigated and if found guilty prosecuted in keeping with relevant Liberian Laws,” CENTAL said.CENTAL said former officials who refused to declare their assets while leaving power/government, should be compelled to do so or prosecuted, in keeping with relevant provisions of the Code of Conduct.Finally, “we would like to admonish President Weah against repeating mistakes of former President Sirleaf, when she, among other things, shielded her officials; ignored recommendations from independent committees established to probe corruption scandals as well as appointed persons with tainted records in key government positions.”Any anti-corruption effort that is not built on a strong prosecution and deterrent regime is bound to fail; this is the weak link in Liberia’s current anti-graft efforts, which must be addressed to decisively tackle corruption and bad governance in the country, the statement maintained.The statement further noted that continuous violation of the Code of Conduct does not augur well for the reputation of the government and its professed desire to address graft, arguably the biggest impediment to the success of the pro-poor agenda.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more