County agrees to purchase property for animal control

A new St. Joseph County Animal Control facility is still a number of years and several thousand dollars from reality, but a noteworthy step was taken Tuesday after county commissioners agreed to the purchase of more than an acre of property for what will someday be the site of a new animal-control headquarters.
County administrator Pat Yoder said the 1.4-acre parcel is adjacent to the southeast corner of the jail property. Purchase price of $15,000 was negotiated with property owner Jon Yoder.
Commissioners agreed to allocate $16,000 from the general fund to cover the expense. The $1,000 beyond the property cost will cover potential expenses such as title insurance and closing costs. Yoder said the general fund will be reimbursed from a special account animal control has in place specifically for a new administrative building and kennel.
Sheriff Brad Balk negotiated the purchase with Jon Yoder after the owners of other adjacent parcels sought an asking price beyond the county’s allocation. Centreville Public Schools was offering four acres for $355,000, while a private owner was asking $25,000 for less than one acre.
Yoder said Balk’s negotiations date to early last fall.

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