Agenda Item # 5

Columbus Consolidated Government
Council Meeting

August 9, 2016

Agenda Report # 28

TO: Mayor and Councilors

SUBJECT: Westville – Requested Revisions and Extension of Memorandum of Agreement

INITIATED BY: Community Reinvestment


Recommendation: Approval is requested to enter into an amended Memorandum of Agreement with Historic Westville, Inc. to extend the timeframe to begin normal operations of the Living History Museum for an additional one (1) year, and to revise language within the MOA which will allow Westville to relocate as planned and be successful in completing the requirements of the MOA.

Background: On August 13, 2013, Council approved per Resolution # 258-13 to authorize the City Manager to enter into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Historic Westville, Inc. for the purpose of relocating Westville's Living History Museum to Columbus, Georgia. The agreement was executed on August 23, 2013 giving Historic Westville, Inc. 24 months to begin normal operations of the Living History Museum with an expiration date of August 22, 2015.

On September 15, 2015, Council approved per Resolution #250-15 to authorize the City Manager to execute an Amendment to the MOA with Historic Westville, Inc. to extend the time frame to begin normal operation of the Living History Museum for one additional year to expire on August 31, 2016.

Westville is requesting an additional extension for one (1) year to expire August 31, 2017, along with the following revisions to the MOA:

Analysis: The Memorandum of Understanding between the City and Historic Westville, Inc. will remain the same except for providing a one-year extension that will expire on August 31, 2017. Also the revised MOA will allow Westville to use Tract A as collateral on a loan as long as the City remains in 1st position on the lien, to lease Tract B for $1 per year instead of $1,200 per year until the RV Park is funded, to remove the trees along S. Lumpkin Road for the relocation of the structures and replace only the living trees after the buildings are all relocated, and to utilize the scale house as a promo building until the park opens for business.

The original MOU states the following: The City will donate a portion of the land (Tract A) to Westville with a revisionary clause stating "Should Westville cease to operate as agreed upon, the donated land will revert to the City. The City will not allow Westville to utilize this property to secure debt. In return for the donated land, Westville agrees to maintain and operate Wren Lake as a public recreation facility to be open during Westville's normal operating hours (Tract C - approximately 50 acres) at no cost to the City. In addition, Westville will lease Tract B (approximately 11 acres) at a start up rate of $1,200 per year for the first three years. Tract B will be sublet to a for profit affiliate of Westville and be developed as an RV Park and primitive camping area. The lease for Tract B will be renegotiated after 3 years to bring the lease payments more in line with market rates for similar property. At any point in the future, if an economic development project is determined to be viable (such as a marina) there is an escape clause that will allow Westville 6 months to abandon Tract C so that the development may occur. The attraction will have a positive impact on local tourism and the City will be able to offer Wren Lake as a public amenity at no cost.

Financial Considerations: Historic Westville, Inc. is funding all relocation expenses and improvements to the land. Although Tract B will be leased for only $1 per year until the RV park can be constructed, once construction is complete the revenue return through lease payments and ad valorem tax payments will be approximately $6,000 per year. Also Westville will become a tourist attraction for the City of Columbus which will likely increase revenues received from tourism. Allowing Westville to use Tract A as collateral to a loan will be no risk to the City considering the City will remain in 1st position on any liens.

Legal Considerations: Council approval is required for all real estate transactions.

Recommendations: Approve a resolution to authorize the City Manager to enter into an amended Memorandum of Agreement with Historic Westville, Inc. to extend the timeframe to begin normal operations of the Living History Museum for an additional one (1) year, and to revise language within the MOA which will allow Westville to relocate as planned and be successful in completing the requirements of the MOA.

Amendment II Westville MOA.pdfAmendment II Westville MOA.pdf
A RESOLUTION
NO. _____
A RESOLUTION TO AUTHORIZE THE CITY MANAGER TO ENTER INTO AN AMENDED MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING WITH HISTORIC WESTVILLE, INC. TO EXTEND THE TIME FRAME TO BEGIN NORMAL OPERATIONS OF THE LIVING HISTORY MUSEUM BY AN ADDITIONAL ONE (1) YEAR, AND TO REVISE LANGUAGE WITHIN THE MOA WHICH WILL ALLOW HISTORIC WESTVILLE, INC. TO RELOCATE AS PLANNED AND BE SUCCESSFUL IN COMPLETING THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE MOA. WHEREAS, on August 23, 2013, the City Manager to enter into a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Historic Westville, Inc., which was extended per Resolution 250-151 for one additional year, for the purpose of relocating Westville's Living History Museum to Columbus, Georgia; and, WHEREAS, Historic Westville, Inc. has asked the City for an amendment to the current MOA to extend the time frame to begin normal operations of the Living History Museum by an additional one (1) year through August 31. 2017; and, WHEREAS, Historic Westville will lease the City owned building located at 3535 B. South Lumpkin Road for $1 per year for a period of one (1) year to utilize as a promo building during the construction at the site. NOW, THEREFORE, THE COUNCIL OF COLUMBUS, GEORGIA, HEREBY RESOLVES AS FOLLOWS:

That the City Manager is hereby authorized to execute an amended Memorandum of Understanding with Historic Westville, Inc. to extend the timeframe to begin normal operations of the Living History Museum for an additional one (1) year, and to revise language within the MOA which will allow Westville to relocate as planned and be successful in completing the requirements of the MOA.
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Introduced at a regular meeting of the Council of Columbus, Georgia, held the _________ day of _____________, 2016 and adopted at said meeting by the affirmative vote of ____________ members of said Council.


Councilor Allen voting __________.
Councilor Baker voting __________.
Councilor Barnes voting __________.
Councilor Davis voting __________.
Councilor Garrett voting __________.
Councilor Henderson voting __________.
Councilor Huff voting __________.
Councilor Thomas voting __________.
Councilor Turner Pugh voting __________.
Councilor Woodson voting __________.



______________________________ __________________________
Tiny B. Washington, Clerk of Council Teresa Pike Tomlinson, Mayor