JIS News

The Kingston and St. Andrew Corporation (KSAC) will be deferring the sale of the Mayor’s official residence on Argyle Road in Kingston, to a date to be announced later this year.
Explaining the withdrawal of the property from the market, Mayor of Kingston, Councillor Desmond McKenzie told the Council’s monthly press briefing on Wednesday (Feb. 11) that, “in order not to give the impression that the Council is divided on the sale of the Mayor’s residence we took a decision to defer the process for the time being. We will be putting out an advertisement and I would like to thank those persons who submitted offers previously and to apologize to them that we have to put the thing on hold for now”.
He informed that after some period had passed, the sale of the residence would again be opened.
Addressing the controversy, which aroused last month about the sale of the property, Mayor McKenzie said: “What took place at the last Finance Committee meeting was rather unfortunate.
There seemed to have been a certain level of misunderstanding or misinformation with regards to the process”.
Disclosing some of the offers made for the property, Mayor McKenzie said that the offers ranged from $3 million to as high as $30 million.
The 0.646 hectares (1.6 acre) property has been vacated for more than 14 years and as a result, the condition of the residence has deteriorated significantly. Explaining to members of the media why the property could not have been rehabilitated, Mayor McKenzie said that the process would be too expensive, noting that an estimate to repair the roof of the residence would have cost in excess of $10 million.
“I don’t want to find ourselves in a position where we spend this enormous amount of money (to do repairs) .because the tax payers of this country would never forgive us for spending that kind of money, so it is easier to dispose of it than to spend money that we don’t have to effect the repairs,” he explained.
Meanwhile, he pointed out that when the property was sold, the money would be used to purchase another residence for the Mayor.
“The sale of the property cannot and will not be used for any other purpose than to purchase a new residence for the Mayor of Kingston,” he stressed.

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