Appraisal was right move

Published 10:57 pm Monday, April 4, 2016

It will be expensive, but the Selma City Council made the right to decision to get their own appraisal for the St. James Hotel.

There wasn’t much of a choice. They city simply had to have an idea of how much the historic hotel was worth before potentially selling it.

The city will use a company out of Chicago, Hotel Appraisers and Advisors, LLC, for the work, which will cost between $12,000 and $15,000. The company will be independent and has a great reputation among the hotel industry.

Having a thorough, fair and accurate appraisal was the logical next step as the city negotiates a sell to businessman Mark Peterson.

Peterson told the city council last week that if the hotel appraises for more or less than the $1.2 million the city is asking for, the two sides would have to renegotiate. Peterson offered to pay for an appraisal through an independent third-party.

However, given how important a transaction this is for the city and taxpayers, the best decision was for the city to pay for their own appraisal.

As the buyer, Peterson still has to option to conduct his own appraisal if he thinks another opinion is needed.

Hopefully, work will begin on the appraisal as soon as this week and the city will have a number to work with sooner than later.