Mexico purchases A.P. Green site for $300,000

City purchases A.P. Green site
On a bitterly cold afternoon, Sheriff Matt Oller reads the legal notice allowing the sale of former Abacus Industrial Holdings property as lawyers Lou Leonatti, representing the sheriff, and David A. Streubel, representing the city of Mexico, look on. Streubel presented Mexico's winning bid on Jan. 9. [Dave Faries]
Dave Faries

The city of Mexico offered the winning bid of $300,000 for the old A.P. Green property that had been owned by Abacus Industrial Holdings during a Sheriff’s auction at the Audrain County Courthouse on Feb. 9.

Mexico’s was the only bid on the site, which covers 90 acres and includes the administrative buildings along Green Road.

“It’s safe to say the city never wanted to own the property,” said Mexico City Manager Bruce Slagle. “The city had to protect our investment.”

City officials decided on $300,000 as an opening offer in order to establish a value for the land as it goes up for sale. The amount is a deduction from a judgment of more that $1.6 million Mexico won against Abacus.

Essentially the city paid nothing for the property.

“This way we get clear title to it,” Slagle pointed out.

Two tenants rent land on the site, which is zoned for heavy industrial use. The refractory products conglomerate HarbisonWalker International operates a machine shop. And Sheraton Valley Wireless out of Moberly owns a cell tower located on the property.

Their payments will now come to the city.

Mexico now intends to offer the land for sale. Slagle says the city has performed occasional maintenance on the site and its remaining structures.

“We’ll have to see what has to be done,” he observed, adding “there’s nothing salvageable out there.”

David A. Streubel, a principal with the St. Louis law firm Cunningham, Vogel & Rost represented the city and made the bid. Lou Leonatti of Leonatti & Baker of Mexico represented Sheriff Matt Oller in conducting the auction.

The Sheriff’s Office seized the property after Abacus stopped making payments to Mexico last year on a bond issue dating from 2010.

Sheriff’s auctions are traditionally held on the steps outside of the courthouse’s east entrance. With temperatures in the low teens, however, Oller moved proceedings indoors after reading the notice announcing the auction outside.

After Streubel announced the city’s bid, there were no further offers. Two bidders who had no interest in the A.P. Green property remained for the auction of a foreclosed residence.


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