Hillsboro City Law Director Fred Beery (left) and Safety and Service Director Dick Donley represented the city of Hillsboro at the Sept. 4 hearing. (HCP photo by Rory Ryan.)
Hillsboro City Law Director Fred Beery (left) and Safety and Service Director Dick Donley represented the city of Hillsboro at the Sept. 4 hearing. (HCP photo by Rory Ryan.)
The city of Hillsboro and West Main Street property owners reached a tentative agreement Wednesday, Sept. 4 to accept a total bid of $62,275 from Evans Landscaping to demolish three Main Street buildings at 119 W. Main, 117 W. Main and 115 W. Main.

Hillsboro Municipal Court Judge David H. McKenna presided over a fifth review hearing on Sept. 4 in a civil case filed by the city of Hillsboro against J. Steven Fettro, et. al. after a building partially collapsed on West Main Street on June 3.

Hillsboro City Law Director Fred Beery and Safety and Service Director Dick Donley represented the city of Hillsboro at the Sept. 4 hearing.

Fettro, who is a co-owner of the collapsed building at 119 West Main Street, was in attendance and represented by Tyler Hoffman. In addition, Helen Walton, who owns an adjacent building at 117 West Main Street, was represented by her son, Joe Mahan.

Mahan said he had a meeting last week with Jim Bailey of Evans Landscaping. He said after the Sept. 4 hearing that he was satisfied with the bid from Evans.

"It's time for common sense to prevail," Mahan said. "We are very pleased with the estimate and ready to proceed."

Mahan said that once a contract is signed with Evans, it could take up to an estimated 30 days for the project to begin.

According to Donley, the city is negotiating a quitclaim deed from the owner of the former Slow and Low restaurant property. Donley then announced Evans' total bid "with some contingencies," and said the bid was broken down on a square-foot percentage for each of the property owners.

"The city has a little bit of money for contingencies," Beery said. "But otherwise, the burden is on the property owners."

"Do you anticipate U.S. 50 to be partially shut down again?" McKenna asked.

"Not for very long," Donley said. "They will start in the back section of the buildings. The city is willing to work with the contractor."

Hoffman said that his client had "no general objection to the plan," adding that they wanted the city and the contractor to take whatever "cost-effective steps are necessary."

"I'm glad we're making progress," McKenna said. "I do not want this to linger any longer. I am very pleased with the progress."

Fettro called The Highland County Press later on Wednesday and said that “no decision has been made completely yet” and that attorneys are still reviewing the bids. Neither Fettro nor his attorney objected to the Evans proposal during the hearing.

McKenna scheduled a sixth review hearing for 10 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18.

"Your Honor, I'd like to see some dust flying by then," Donley said.