By LeAnn R. Ralph
MENOMONIE — The Dunn County Board has authorized the sale of 5.9 acres between Highway 12/29 and The Neighbors of Dunn County to Prevea for $653,400.
Dunn County was approached by Prevea about purchasing six of the 14 acres owned by the county between the Neighbors and Highway 12/29, said Paul Miller, county manager, at the Dunn County Board’s May 16 meeting.
Prevea (Sacred Heart Hospital of the Hospital Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis) is a statewide healthcare provider and has expressed an interest in building a medical facility in Menomonie.
Out of the sale price of $653,400, the county would use $400,000 to build a frontage road from the Neighbors west to the property line, and then the City of Menomonie would continue the frontage road, Miller said.
Miller has been working with Prevea to negotiate the sale price of the property.
The frontage road would help provide access to the remaining eight acres, he noted.
Approximately two acres of the parcel is wetland.
Elton Christopherson, county board supervisor for District 25, said he did not think Dunn County should sell the property.
“It cuts off options for caring for our senior citizens,” Christopherson said.
If the Neighbors ever needed to expand, the county cannot build to the north of the facility, he said, adding that the county board should leave the property open for something else, such as a Dunn County assisted living facility.
“We’re tending to box ourselves in,” Christopherson said.
Jim Anderson, county board supervisor for District 11, said he was in favor of selling the land, and the remaining $200,000 after building the service road should be applied to the debt against the Neighbors.
Diane Morehouse, county board supervisor for District 21, asked if board members could have any assurances the extra money would go toward the Neighbors debt.
Mike Rogers, county board supervisor for District 10, said he was concerned about the money going into the general fund and not being earmarked for the Neighbors.
“Who decides where the money goes?” asked David Bartlett, supervisor for District 2 and chair of the Dunn County Board.
Miller said he would discuss the issue of who, exactly, decides where the money will go with Nick Lange, Dunn County’s corporation counsel.
A motion to approve the resolution authorizing the sale of 5.9 acres to Prevea for $653,400 passed on a vote of 16 “yes” to 11 “no.”
Voting in favor of the motion were Gary Seipel (District 29); Ron Score (District 4); Mary Solberg (District 20); Sheila Stori (District 18); Robin Sweeny (District 16); James Anderson (District 11); Kitz Cleary (District 13); Vaughn Hedlund (District 3); Sarah Kennedy (District 22); Donald Kuether (District 15); Theresa Lyall (District 14); Kelly McCullough (District 17); Diane Morehouse (District 21); Randy Prochnow (District 24); Tom Quinn (District 9); and David Bartlett (District 2).
Voting against the motion were Carl Vandermeulen (District 19); Jim Zons (District 6); Gary Bjork (District 7); Larry Bjork (District 26); Elton Christopherson (District 25); Dale Harschlip (District 27); Brian Johnson (District 1); Mike Kneer (District 12); Tim Lienau (District 28); Charles Maves (District 8); Mike Rogers (District 10).
County board supervisors Gary Stene (District 5) and James Tripp (District 23) were absent from the meeting.
The resolution approved by the county board authorizes the sale of the property but does not execute the sale, Miller said.