The Herald Bulletin

Midday Update

Local Education

February 26, 2014

Offer could extend Wigwam deadline

Agreement could set June 30 for a decision on demolition

ANDERSON — Discussions are continuing on an extension of the deadline to preserve the Wigwam complex through the end of June.

The Anderson Community School Corp., which owns the Wigwam complex, originally set a March 1 deadline for a private developer to take ownership of the facility or ACS would move forward with demolition plans.

The Blue Ribbon Committee, established by Anderson Mayor Kevin Smith in December, has voted to support a proposal to preserve the historic complex by Wigwam Sports Entertainment (WSE).

“The Blue Ribbon Committee, with the assistance of the Wigwam Sports Entertainment LLC, has the workings of a temporary offer of support on the table for consideration by the ACS board,” Greg Winkler, director of the Anderson Economic Development Department, said Tuesday.

Winkler said details of the offer will be made public when finalized or at the March 11 school board meeting.

“This offer will give the WSE until the end of June to complete the process of attracting and qualifying investors,” he said. “Given the progress that the WSE has had over the past several months in securing investors, the Wigwam Blue Ribbon Committee believes that the chances of success have improved.”

Four organizations, including the city and ACS, an individual and WSE have agreed to cover the costs incurred by the school system for the next four months. Those costs include utilities, insurance and the alarm system.

“The LLC has stepped up to the plate,” Winkler said. “They’re providing upfront money as part of the offer.”

If approved by the ACS board, the deadline would be extended from March 1 to June 30.

Tom Snyder, chairman of the Blue Ribbon Committee, said the monthly costs range from $6,600 to $7,900 per month.

He said ACS has estimated the cost of reopening the Wigwam as a multi-use recreational facility at $116,000.

Snyder said WSE is looking to raise $1 million and is offering shares at a cost of $5,000.

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