Wexford councillors have blocked a local authority proposal to sell a derelict shed on a small town centre site for €30,000, asking instead that the property be placed on the open market.
Wexford County Council received a request to sell the building at the corner of Spawell Road and 1798 Street and following consultations with the relevant Council departments, it was confirmed as being surplus to requirements.
The sale of the shed was previously discussed with another party who has since informed the Council that they are no longer interested in buying the property.
A house which adjoins the shed has recently been bought by Eddarm Limited of 122 Stillorgan Heath, Stillorgan, County Dublin,.
Eddarm approached the local authority with a view to acquiring the shed which is on a site of approximately 60 square metres.
Director of Services Tony Larkin said the Council supports the request in principle and the property would be sold for €30,000.
The company would be required to take the property as is and the Council would not be liable for any claim arising from its condition.
Cllr. John Hegarty said the house next door was sold for a price in excess of €90,000 and that property is a slightly smaller size at 56 square metres.
'We are selling 60 square metres for €30,000. It's not something we need to sell in a hurry', said Cllr. Hegarty, adding that the original proposed price of this site was €20,000.
Cllr. Leonard Kelly said he had reservations when it came up before. He welcomed the increase in price but asked for more details on how the valuation of €30,000 was arrived at.
Director of Services Tony Larkin said if the members didn't want to sell it, the Council would probably demolish the shed.
'If the site next door sold for €90,000 and the house is going to be knocked down, why are we selling a larger site for €30,000', asked the Mayor, Cllr. George Lawlor.
Mr. Larkin said the Council had a valuer in and added: 'We are not contractually bound in any way by this.
'Whether or not we sell it or knock it, is it possible that we could keep it', asked Cllr. David Hynes.
'I don't think we would get funding to build a single house on a single site', said the Mayor, asking if the sale of the site next door is conditional on the purchase of the Council plot.
Property department official Anthony Bailey replied it was his information that the other sale had been closed.
Cllr. Garry Laffan said there was a practice in the Council over the years of selling sites of no benefit to the local authority, to the owners of adjoining properties.
Cllr. Hegary pointed out that a few weeks ago, the person involved wasn't the owner of the adjoining property. He said he thought it should be sold on the open market.
This was agreed by the members.