Dec. 20 Mtg. report (quick report)

The “few” are the mighty from which they will grow. We had about 50 people at the meeting, ALL wanting to work. Hank Moore, City Commissioner, did come and speak with us. His information is invaluable and focused on the entire city. The questions and answers flowed freely.

Most everyone signed up to help with the various committees of research, etc. All agreed that we have past the “emotional” approach, which involves only a portion of the city. Action needs to be taken to involve the real facts and issues and work with the Stillwater citizenry toward the best interest of the entire City of Stillwater, the University and the State. We will aim to have a true PARTNERSHIP with the city and the university.

There will not be another meeting until after Christmas. Then we will probably meet in committees and periodically the heads of committees will meet to keep our efforts coordinated. You will be contacted by your choice of either e-mail or by phone.

Anyone not attending the meeting, property owner and/or CONCERNED CITIZEN who desires to work toward this goal, can email us by adding a comment under the topic “ How Can You Help” ( write your comment at the very bottom of that page).

We were so involved in our “mission” that we did not have time to report on the meeting held with Dr. Schmidly. I don’t know that we learned anything new, but it was good to meet with him. He graciously listened to and answered as best he could, all our questions and comments.

Summary of 12-19-05 meeting with Dr. Schmidly

1. Real property acquisition through negotiation is presently funded and the OSUF will continue to acquire property on a willing seller/willing buyer basis.

2. At this time money is not available for eminent domain action in all the area N of Hall Fame. There is limited funding to purchase proerties from willing sellers. There is not, currently, funding available to complete the planned facilities. Mr. Schmidly cannot/will not predict when money will be available. Possibly a few years.

3. Eminent Domain will be used to acquire property when:
a. Funding is in place for a specific building project.
b. The property required for the specific building project cannot be purchased on willing buyer/willing seller basis.

4. OSU is willing to provide studies, reports, maps etc. (or information on where such can be viewed or obtained).

5. OSU will respond to written requests and/or suggestions from residents.

6. President Schmidly is available for further meetings.

7. Ann asked for a map of Stillwater showing all property currently owned by OSU and Dr. Schmidley stated that he would get that for us.

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One Response to Dec. 20 Mtg. report (quick report)

  1. Trude Coonrad Naff says:

    I couldn’t be at the meeting on December 20th, but have read the report. I’m concerned about President Schmidly’s continued insistence that funding for eminent domain action in all the area north of Hall of Fame is not available at this time. He is not telling the whole truth. What President Schmidly fails to convey is that the $30 million Boone Pickens has given to the OSU Foundation (which does NOT have right of eminent domain) for the purchase of “property north of the stadium” is not only sufficient funding to purchase the property via a “willing buyer/willing seller” basis, but is enough to transfer sufficient funds to the University (which DOES have right of eminent domain) when it becomes necessary to exercise that right against those property owners in “Phase 1″ of the Master Plan who are not willing sellers.

    One other issue that is of concern is the property owners who own investment property in the area of the proposed takeover. I have discussed my situation with several attorneys in Memphis, where I live, and also with an attorney in Oklahoma. Although the issue of capital gains for owners of investment property was briefly addressed in a November meeting with the Mayor, attorneys, property appraisers, etc., it wasn’t fully explained. The fact that the University has said it will use eminent domain to acquire the targeted property as a last resort statement meet the requirement for as a sale under threat of eminent domain at this time.

    If you sell as what President Schmidly terms as a “willing seller to a willing buyer,” there is no threat of eminent domain and you will fall under Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code, not Section 1033, which is a sale under imminent threat of condemnation. If you own investment property, as many do, I urge you to discuss a contemplated sale at this juncture with your attorney or accountant. I would be hesitant to sell unless I have a letter from the University stating that the sale of my property is under imminent threat of condemnation. Since the University is not forthcoming with its intent, I don’t think that is an option.

    I am long distance in this process, however, I think it would be worth the time to submit specific questions, in writing, to President Schmidly and ask that he respond to them in writing. Dialogue alone will not pin them down.

    I, of course, am willing to do what is necessary.

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