Council finalizes lease-purchase agreement with company for property in Alatex park

Published 12:01 am Wednesday, June 20, 2012

The Andalusia City Council Tuesday authorized the mayor to finalize a lease-purchase agreement with Wright Brothers LLC for property in the Alatex industrial park.

The city and its industrial development board has had an agreement with the company since it purchased the property from John G. Ralls Jr. in 2009.

The original letter agreement was for Wright to pay a purchase price of $500,000, owner-financed, for 25 years at 5 percent interest.

However, a stumbling block in acquiring eight acres of land in the tract from Cluett American Corp. delaying finalizing the lease-purchase agreement, as a portion of those eight acres was to be sold to Wright Bros. in the lease-purchase agreement.

City clerk John Thompson explained that Cluett has had several successors, and the property is now owned by a Canadian company with whom the city remains in negotiations for the property.

Wright Bros. requested that the purchase agreement be finalized, a necessary step in a project the company is about to take on.

The council agreed to reduce the purchase price by $40,000 until the last bit of property is acquired, at which time Wright Bros. will have an option to buy a portion of it.

“We bought that property with the idea of it being turned into an industrial park,” Mayor Earl Johnson said. “The money we spent on the Alatex property is being repaid to us in the form of sales or leases.”

“This keeps that industry in Andalusia, and brings new jobs to Andalusia,” Johnson said. “That’s good for the economy.”

Wright Brothers, owned by Mel and Nate Wright, manufactures storage buildings. The company also converts ISO Corten steel shipping containers to small cabins.

In other business, the council:

The corporate office on the property is currently being renovated as a new officer for the Andalusia Area Chamber of Commerce, which is investing in the improvements.

• Accepted a bid from Logical Computer Solutions for $27,000 to provide three new servers for the city.

One server will be at city hall, the other at the police department, and each will back up the other. A third server at a remote location will back up both in the event there is a catastrophic event in Andalusia that destroys both servers.