Havre Daily News
Havre officials recently received a letter offering the city $300,000 for land it owns south of town.
Havre Mayor Bob Rice today said that part of the land being considered is land leased by the Saddle Butte RC Club.
In a letter dated April 3, the Missoula law firm of Garlington, Lohn, and Robinson said it is representing Phoenix-based Hewson Development Company and that it wished to purchase land to the east and south of the existing Border Patrol facilities and the land south of the Havre Ice Dome.
The firm said Hewson Development is willing to pay the city $2,000 per acre for 30 acres of land and will offer the remaining $240,000 for improvements at the city's baseball and softball fields, through in-kind services or a cash payment.
The firm gave city officials 90 days to consider the offer. Should the city decide to accept the proposal, the letter said, the parties agree to finalize a formal purchase and sale agreement within 45 days after the date of the acceptance.
The purchase will only be made if Hewson is awarded the contract to construct a new U.S. Border Patrol facility on the land, the letter said.
In a Havre City Council meeting Monday night, Rice said public meetings must be held before the purchase can be approved.
RC club secretary Bonnie Keely said she and other members of the club had no knowledge of the proposal until she heard about it Tuesday.
Keely said the city has signed a 20-year lease with the club, one that does not expire until 2011.
Keely added that relocating the club isn't going to be easy should the city accept the proposal.
“We have an underground sprinkler system, trees, ... a building,” she said. “It would be very hard for us to just pick up and walk out of there.”
Last year, Rice had city workers install a walking path on the leased land. Keely said the walking path was in direct line with the flying field, and was a hazard to visitors.
“We told him ‘We will work with you to move it,'” Keely said.
The path was moved northward to a different location after the city's insurance provider said it was a liability.
The RC club frequently hosts other flying clubs from Canada, Oregon, Washington, North Dakoda, Arizona and others around Montana.