The Gonzales City Council will hold a special called meeting on Tuesday, June 29 at noon.
On the agenda is a closed session in regards to the litigation of the Estate of J.B. Wells, followed by a return to open session to discuss and consider any action from the closed session.
The Council held a special called meeting on Thursday, June 24, but took no action after going into closed session regarding the Well estate.
The Gonzales City Council approved a $1.825 million settlement in the lawsuit brought in 2017 by the Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary against the city over its handling of property it received from the estate of J.B. Wells.
The settlement avoids more legal fees and the city’s possible loss of the land that now houses the J.B. Wells Park, Expo and Arena. It also leaves the city to find a way to come with the money.
The decision came on a 5-0 vote of the council at its regular meeting on Thursday, June 10. The vote included newly sworn-in District 2 councilwoman Sherry Tumlinson-Koepp, Mayor Connie Kacir, newly elected Mayor Pro Tem Rob Brown, Bobby O’Neal, and Joseph “Poochy” Kridler.
The city council will now have to decide how how to pay for settlement.
During a presentation at the June 24 meeting, the coumcil was provided information about possible bond options, but took no action.
“I think that ultimately taking a chance to allow the case to go to trial was too much and in order to mitigate the risk, we needed to settle and thankfully all parties involved on both sides were of the same mind to settle the case,” Koepp said.
Like Koepp, Brown found it in the best interest of the city to avoid a trail and possible appeals.
“I think that ultimately taking a chance to allow the case to go to trial was too much and in order to mitigate the risk, we needed to settle and thankfully all parties involved on both sides were of the same mind to settle the case,” he said.
The J.B. Wells Park, Expo and Arena was appraised at $7.349 million by the Gonzales Central Appraisal District, and $11.3 million by Bolton Real Estate according to case filings.