Manti MIBA building sold to state, council OKs property annexation
By Kellie Harrison
MANTI —After months of negotiation, Manti City has accepted an offer from the state of Utah to purchase the old World War II parachute building and its 1.38 acre lot for $120,000.
The city, knowing it was not possible to finance the rehabilitation of the Manti Improvement Business Association (MIBA) building, explored demolition options. However, the estimated cost for demolition is more than they would receive from the sale of the property.
This sale also solves a safety issue because there has been a struggle keeping vandals out of the building. At the public hearing on May 2, Mary Pipes said she supported the sale and encouraged early demolition for safety purposes.
City Administrator Kent Barton believes that the outcome of the sale will “create great opportunity” for the city.
Manti uses the large attached metal building and has allowed the Resource Clothing Bank to utilize parts of the old building that have been deemed safe and secure. They will be able to continue using those portions of the building for 18 months, under the new purchase agreement with the state. However, if structural issues arise, the occupants will be asked to vacate earlier.
Former fire chief John Jensen said the roof is a tremendous hazard and the building needs to go. The state will eventually make improvements to the property that are believed to be of great benefit to the city. The state has not yet announced plans for what they will do with the property.
At the Manti City Council meeting, Barton presented a petition for annexation. The area to be annexed comprise approximately 438 acres to the north and east of the city.
This includes: Approximately 58 acres north of the cemetery, east of 100 East Street and west of Highway 89, including the city sports complex; approximately 58 acres north of the LDS Temple property and east of Highway 89, including the campground and the adjacent farm property to the north; approximately 275 acres east of the campground and Manti City north hills property, and north of 300 North Street, including the oolite stone quarry and Manti City water storage facility; approximately 43 acres south of 300 North and east of 600 East and north of the Heritage Heights subdivision; approximately five acres being east of the Heritage Heights subdivision.
The Planning Commission has reviewed the proposed annexation and has held a public hearing.
According to Barton, the annexation will allow those who live there “full city services” and there will be more opportunities for future development.
An affected property owner, Lenard Stull, commented that he agrees with the proposed annexation, but believes the city’s subdivision ordinance is too restrictive and should be relaxed. Barton told Stull to watch the upcoming agendas of the Planning Commission for considered changes to the subdivision ordinance.
At the end of the discussion, the Mayor Korry Soper called for a motion of acceptance for the annexation petition and it was accepted.
Soper also told concerned business owners that the city would work towards a permanent solution to reduce the dust from the alley behind Main Street. Larry Lund, one of the business owners who had previously brought up the issue, suggested that the city chip seal the cracks so there would be less dust.
Dave Hall and his attorney Bruce Baird voiced frustration with the $24 per month fee for use of the city’s electrical system to transport power Hall generates across the city owned power grid. Hall said that he shouldn’t have to pay the fee because the fee was not in place when he decided to purchase his solar generation equipment. Soper thanked Hall and his attorney and said the council would take the matter under advisement.