City Council to explore sale of public safety building

By The Associated Press

GARY — The Gary City Council has voted to explore the option of selling and leasing back its public safety building in an effort to raise funds to balance the city’s budget.

The vote Tuesday was 7-1 in favor of the effort.

Although no buyer has been lined up yet, Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson said banks have expressed some confidence in the future success of the sale/lease back.

The building in question was a hospital that closed in 1995. Former Mayor Scott King used $15 million in casino revenues to renovate a part of the building. It reopened in 2003 as the public safety building and is home to the Gary Police Department and provides space for the Gary City Court and the clerk’s office.

Gary adopted a $54 million budget for this year. It is expected to collect about $30 million in property taxes.

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