The Armstrong School District Board of Directors last night rejected two bids for the former Kittanning Senior High School.
Emerald City Gym of Kittanning submitted a bid of $25,000 and Living Waters Church, that currently owns the former Knights of Columbus hall in Kittanning, bid $25,101.
The bids were for the senior high facility and senior high parking lot, but did not include the football field.
ASD Business Manager Sam Kirk explained the process after the bids were received.
“Each party was asked to submit with their bid a business plan. After reviewing those, the District also invited both parties to come in and present their proposals to not only board member representatives and representatives from (Kittanning Borough) and Senator White’s office. After that was done, it was just felt at this time to reject the bids.”
Kirk said ASD has several options. First, the school district could go out and request additional bids. Second, since the project was already bid, the school district can entertain other buyers.
“We can at this point sit down and negotiate with anyone we wanted to. If someone knocks on our door tomorrow and said ‘We want to talk to you about this property,’ we could sit down and negotiate with them if we so choose. Everyone has had ample time to bid on it. That property has been vacant for three years. We really didn’t have a whole lot of people knocking on our door that were interested in the property.”
Kirk said the district wants to sell the property as quickly as possible, but not at the expense of the community.
“We want something that will be viable for the community. We want a company or individual to come in and be able to sustain a business. None of us want someone to come in and then five years down the road, they have to leave that property dilapidated. We want something that will be beneficial to the community and hopefully generate some tax dollars eventually.”
The property currently is considered a Keystone Opportunity Zone, which means the buyer would not pay taxes until after 2025.