The Beaver Bay City Council held a special meeting Tuesday, Aug. 13, to further discuss a proposal to sell the property that houses the Beaver Bay branch of the Bay Area Historical Society museum.

The Historical Society received an offer to purchase the building for $58,000 from Teresa and Keith Bartel, who own the neighboring Beaver Bay Mini Mall and Agate Shop. The Bartels also approached the city of Beaver Bay with an offer to purchase the property on which the museum is located for $48,000.

According to City Administrator Tim Anderson, the council heard a few alternative options for the situation: sell the property outright; sell the building, but lease the property; or the city would acquire the building.

“The last option didn’t go over well,” Anderson said.

At last week’s public hearing on the same subject, when the topic of the city purchasing the building was broached, two councilors, Buddy Kinderstrand and Tom Gmach, dismissed the idea, with Kinderstrand stating the city “owns enough property as it is.”

After hearing the new options, the council ultimately tabled the issue for further consideration at a future meeting.

Realtor objects to relevance of bankruptcy

Gigi Maxwell, Realtor at Messina Living Realty, told the News-Chronicle that the Bartels were approached by the Historical Society with the idea to sell the building and moved to buy the land where the building sits "so as to not have to move the building again."

She disputed the relevance of the couple's 2011 bankruptcy mentioned in the public meeting last week and reported by the News-Chronicle.

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"The 2011 bankruptcy that was mentioned was irrelevant to this transaction as it was an extenuating circumstance," Maxwell said. "Keith and Teresa have proven themselves to be hardworking, sincere and responsible members of the community who have built their businesses in the community and kept them in good condition. They are responsible in keeping up with their payments to the city."

Maxwell emphasized that the Bartels are "willing to give the City of Beaver Bay first refusal rights if they ever decide to sell" the property in question.