By Adam Swift
The city is collecting revenue from a number of companies using the 30-plus acre Wonderland property for vehicle storage.
City Council President Anthony Cogliandro said there have been questions raised about the use of the property and associated income from the parked cars.
Last week, the City Council voted to once again move forward with the Wonderland property as the preferred site for building a new high school. In 2022, the city took the property by eminent domain from the previous owners for $29.5 million, however, there is still ongoing litigation regarding that purchase price.
“I did reach out to the CFO, Rich Viscay, and I did receive a spreadsheet, and I want to share it with the public,” said Cogliandro at last week’s council meeting. “I know it is a big question with what is going on with the cars.”
In Fiscal Year 2023, Cogliandro said there were five companies renting parking spaces from the city for a total of roughly $230,000 in revenue.
So far in FY24, there are three companies renting spaces from the city who have paid $276,000 thus far.
“I also want to say that it might be difficult to find it on the budget, because it is listed as a non-return, which means we don’t know if this is revenue we are going to be collecting next year,” said Cogliandro. “Now that the school is going to be going there, we won’t have these parking spaces rented. But to settle the debate, yes, we are renting those spaces and we are collecting the revenue, and it looks pretty nice.”
Cogliandro said he was going to place the motion he made for more information about the revenue from the parking spaces on file.
While the council voted 10-1 to move forward with the Wonderland site as the preferred site for a new high school last week, the council will have to approve the funding authorization for the project by a two-thirds vote, likely in June.