The Barrow County Board of Education at its Tuesday night board meeting was slated to approve a property sale to The Tree House, a local children’s advocacy center. But a last minute bidder expressed an interest in buying the surplus property at 173 Highland Drive in Winder.
After some discussion over the board’s current process for surplus properties and procedure for bidding on them, board member Lynn Stevens made a motion to go through the formal bid process already in place with board member Bill Bramlett seconding the motion. The board unanimously approved the motion.
Tree House board member Matthew McWhorter addressed the board at its Sept. 27 meeting about buying the property, suggesting the amount of $93,500 cash after having hired contractors to complete due diligence on the vacant property.
“Given the current building condition and the economic environment we find ourselves in, I believe we have come to a price that would be fair for The Tree House, the Barrow County School System and the taxpayers, as well,” wrote McWhorter in The Tree House proposal letter he submitted to the board.
Prior to the board’s discussion on the matter Tuesday night, superintendent Wanda Creel advised she recommended both parties make a closed bid proposal.
“Because it was reported out what the offer was by The Tree House, we feel like in fairness to all organizations that we need to utilize a closed bid process so that we can move forward and both parties can be considered,” said Creel.