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09-16-06 City may lose funds due to legalities

By Tim Cox

  A proposal by Celina city officials to buy land along the Coldwater Creek for a wetlands mitigation project is in legal limbo as a contractual deadline approaches.

  City officials tentatively planned to buy a 5-acre parcel along the creek from developer Steve Klosterman as part of the proposed walkway project along the west bank of Grand Lake. The city must create 2.5 acres of new wetlands to make up for the portion of the lake that would be filled in to make room for the mile-long concrete path.

  State officials already had given the city tentative approval to use the land for wetlands development. City officials plan to create the wetlands area and then divert the Coldwater Creek through it to reduce the sediment the creek carries into Grand Lake.

  A resolution to purchase the land was stricken from this week's Celina City Council meeting agenda. The legislation was held back because city officials are pursuing a court proceeding to clear up any legal questions about plans to borrow money to build the path.

  But a purchase option the city paid $10,000 for expires Monday, at which point Klosterman would be free to pursue his prior residential development plans for the Coldwater Creek property. Based on the option contract, the city would lose the $10,000, which would have gone toward the $12,500 per acre cost of the tract of land city officials want to buy.  City development consultant Kent


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