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The Boyer Company was asked point blank in a telephone call to its Salt Lake City Headquarters Thursday if it’s pulling out of the Trinity Site Project.
“The world’s not that simple as a yes or no answer,” said Wade Williams, a partner in the company.
Williams set the record straight saying The Boyer Company is working very hard to stay in the game but if they can’t come up with a project model in the next 30 days that works in this economic downturn – the deal’s done for.
“The hitch is finding a model that really works for the small retailer,” Williams said. “Also, the problem in Los Alamos is that rents are higher, construction costs are higher and labor costs are higher. I think we’ll know for sure if it’s go or not go in 30 days – but we’re pushing hard.”
County Council Chair Michael Wheeler said that negotiations with Boyer have been going on for quite some time without any result.
“So that’s a question, really,” he said, “beyond that, everything else has been negotiations, so I can’t comment on that.”
Wheeler also said he could neither confirm nor deny the 30-day timeline.
“We had an original timeline and we’ve far exceeded that timeline. I think the public needs to know that before anything can happen on that site, the county and schools need to move off of it. There’s a lot of people that don’t understand why we don’t already have businesses over there,” he said.
The county and schools drafted a set of “principles” about their partnership for the Trinity Site Revitalization Project and the Airport Basin Site.
The School Board endorsed the principles at their March 26 meeting and the County Council endorsed this same document at their council meeting on April 7.
The document affirms the objectives of LAPS and the county in partnering to complete the Trinity Site project.
The two entities created the document to provide clarity to the mutual principles that they want to adhere to in the final negotiation stages and to amplify the complementary aspects of this project to both entities.
School Board President Joan Ahlers addressed the situation with Boyer and the pending agreement between the district and the county during an interview Saturday.
“This is the first I’m hearing about it,” Ahlers said of Boyer’s 30-day do or die deadline.
“If Boyer’s going to let us know in 30 days – then discussions will begin at that time. The school district is one level removed from Boyer as our negotiations are with the county. If Boyer pulls out then we’ll have to get with the county to develop another plan,” she said.
Monitor Managing Editor contributed to this story.