NC lawmakers seek to nix Dix property lease - WNCT

NC lawmakers seek to nix Dix property lease

Posted: Updated:
RALEIGH, N.C. -

Some Republicans in the General Assembly want to reconsider the deal that allows the city of Raleigh to turn the grounds of a now-closed state mental hospital into a regional park.

House and Senate members filed similar legislation Thursday that essentially tears up the December lease agreement then-Gov. Beverly Perdue reached with city leaders for the 325-acre Dorothea Dix property. GOP lawmakers say the agreement was rushed and did not get enough money for the state.

The bill would direct state officials to renegotiate leasing a part of the property at a fair market rate for a park and earmark proceeds for mental health programs. The rest of the land would remain in state hands for employee workspace.

The current 75-year lease would give the state up to $68 million.

Republican State Senator, Louis Pate said, "I think the fair thing to do is to start over again at the beginning and hopefully Raleigh will want to go ahead and invest in a park. We hope they will."

Senator Pate said the original lease price given to the city of Raleigh is far below market value, "We know that the land is worth a lot more than that."

How much more? He says he doesn't know yet. If the bill passes, the state will hire a professional appraiser to put a new price value on the land.

Mayor of Raleigh, Nancy McFarlane said "I'm extremely disappointed. We've worked very hard, it was really a nine year process to finally come to an agreement and there's been so much public support for this project."

McFarlane said she was shocked when she first found out about the bill. "I expect the State to fulfill its contractual obligations. I think that it's a message to anybody that is entering into a contract with the State. Can they come back and change it? I'm a business person. I certainly enter into contracts with every intention to ethically fulfill that contract."

The bill will be discussed on Monday at the Legislature. We asked Senator Pate how they're legally allowed to go back on the lease, and he said it's because the state still owns the land. Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane said she is currently talking with the city attorney, about their legal rights to fight back, should the bill pass.

Eileen Park

Eileen joined WNCN after years of working as a foreign correspondent. During her time off, she enjoys relaxing with her dogs, reading, and exploring the Triangle. More>>

  • Wake CountyMore>>

  • 9th suspect arrested in Wake Forest kidnapping

    9th suspect arrested in Wake Forest kidnapping

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 1:01 PM EDT2014-04-23 17:01:55 GMT
    Frank Janssen was kidnapped from his Wake Forest home on April 5.Frank Janssen was kidnapped from his Wake Forest home on April 5.
    The ninth suspect named in an indictment handed up Tuesday has been arrested in connection with the kidnapping of a Wake Forest man.   
    The ninth suspect named in an indictment handed up Tuesday has been arrested in connection with the kidnapping of a Wake Forest man.   
  • St. Aug's names interim president

    St. Aug's names interim president

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:13 AM EDT2014-04-23 15:13:05 GMT
    St. Augustine's has tapped Dr. Everett Blair Ward to be the university's interim president after the school's board of trustees fired president Dianne Boardley Suber earlier this month before she could retire.
    St. Augustine's has tapped Dr. Everett Blair Ward to be the university's interim president after the school's board of trustees fired president Dianne Boardley Suber earlier this month before she could retire.
  • Dr. Campbell: New treatments for migraine headaches

    Dr. Campbell: New treatments for migraine headaches

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 7:51 AM EDT2014-04-23 11:51:27 GMT

    The FDA has just approved a new device to prevent migraine headaches. This is the first device of its kind and may revolutionize the way we treat headaches.

    The FDA has just approved a new device to prevent migraine headaches. This is the first device of its kind and may revolutionize the way we treat headaches.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Mom bites off dog's ear to save daughter during attack

    Mom bites off dog's ear to save daughter during attack

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 2:49 PM EDT2014-04-22 18:49:19 GMT
    Image from CNN/KHOU-TVImage from CNN/KHOU-TV
    In a backyard in Alvin, swings a very lucky girl. Her name is Mackenzi Plass, or Kenzi for short, and she survived a dog attack and has undergone several surgeries."She'll be two and a half in May," said her very proud mother Chelsi Camp. "She's doing great. You wouldn't know it if you couldn't see."Mackenzi has scars on her face after the ordeal just weeks ago that put her mother's animal instincts to the test."You do whatever you can," said Camp. "I don't have physical strength at my side."...
    In a backyard in Alvin, swings a very lucky girl. Her name is Mackenzi Plass, or Kenzi for short, and she survived a dog attack and has undergone several surgeries."She'll be two and a half in May," said her very proud mother Chelsi Camp. "She's doing great. You wouldn't know it if you couldn't see."Mackenzi has scars on her face after the ordeal just weeks ago that put her mother's animal instincts to the test."You do whatever you can," said Camp. "I don't have physical strength at my side."...
  • Owner of Raleigh 'Party Mansion' guilty of tax evasion

    Owner of Raleigh 'Party Mansion' guilty of tax evasion

    Monday, April 14 2014 4:07 PM EDT2014-04-14 20:07:04 GMT
    Claude Verbal II, who now lives in Miami, pleads guilty to a number of federal tax evasion charges.
    Claude Verbal II, who now lives in Miami, pleads guilty to a number of federal tax evasion charges.
  • Indictment: Prosecutor was target of Wake Forest kidnapping

    Indictment: Prosecutor was target of Wake Forest kidnapping

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 6:57 PM EDT2014-04-22 22:57:33 GMT
    The U.S. Department of Justice said Kevin Melton has been charged with conspiring to kidnap in relation to the abduction of Frank Janssen from his Wake Forest homeThe U.S. Department of Justice said Kevin Melton has been charged with conspiring to kidnap in relation to the abduction of Frank Janssen from his Wake Forest home
    Nine people have been indicted in connection with the kidnapping of a Wake Forest man whose daughter prosecuted a high-ranking member of the Bloods street gang.
    Nine people have been indicted in connection with the kidnapping of a Wake Forest man whose daughter prosecuted a high-ranking member of the Bloods street gang.
Powered by WorldNow

3221 South Evans Street
Greenville N.C. 27834

Telephone: 252.355.8500
Fax: 252.355.8568
Email: newsdesk@wnct.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.