Paonia town trustees voted unanimously to award two real estate listings for town-owned property to Western Colorado Realty.com broker/owner Mike Jackson.
Jackson was awarded the contract to list two parcels located outside of the town boundary that the town purchased in anticipation of using them to build the new wastewater treatment plant. The proposal allows for a reduced commission rate of 4.5 percent if another broker is involved in the sale, with 2.5 percent going to the cooperating broker; or a 2.5 percent commission to Western Colorado Realty.com if Jackson is the sole broker.
After the properties were purchased, the town realized they didn't need all of the land. "Almost as soon as they bought them they were talking about selling them," said town manager Jane Berry.
Parcels include 38 acres at 38784 Marsh Road, purchased by the town in 1999 and including 35 shares of Monitor Ditch irrigation water. The parcel includes an old house and other outbuildings. The house is considered unsound and has been used for training by the Paonia Volunteer Fire Department for a number of years, said Berry. "It is a huge safety hazard," said Berry. The fire department is being given the option of burning it down. If they decline, the structure will be removed prior to marketing and sale.
The second parcel includes 58 acres of land with a home and 3.42 shares of North Fork Valley Farmer's Ditch water rights, located at 28976 Highway 133 and purchased in 1998.
Bob and Linda Lario, with RE/MAX Mountain West in Paonia, proposed a 6 percent commission, with 3 percent going to a cooperating broker.
"Both companies have demonstrated tremendous integrity and have successful track records and experience," said Berry. "Either one of them, I'm sure would do an awesome job for the town."
I just want to say this is a really difficult choice," said trustee Suzanne Watson, "because I know you guys are both great Realtors. It's hard to make this decision."
Trustees also approved the subdividing of the 58-acre parcel, which will require either a minor subdivision or boundary adjustment through Delta County. Berry said the town needs to retain 42.39 acres of the parcel, which includes river frontage and the new wastewater treatment plant and ponds. All of that land is located south of the Farmer's Ditch, which cuts through the property. The town has no use for the water rights, said Berry.
The 15.47 acres north of the ditch, along with home and water rights, will be marketed by Jackson. "There's already a lot of interest in that particular parcel," said Berry. With the irrigation water, its highest and best use is agricultural, which is in high demand. In addition, said Berry, the existing house can be fixed up for a residence or other purpose.
Following the vote, Bart Eller with Paonia Soil Company told trustees he is interested in one of the properties. The company is growing and they are looking for land that would allow them to expand and one of the properties might suit their needs.
The Hotchkiss-Crawford Historial Society will host its annual meeting on Sunday, Feb. 17, at 2:00 at the Memorial Hall in Hotchkiss. There will be music, refreshments and a guest speaker, Robert Sibernagel. He is well known in the area as he writes regional history columns for The Daily Sentinel. He was formerly the editorial page editor for that paper for 19 years.