The German Township Trustees have purchased the former Dielman Supply building in Archbold for $170,000.
Randy Ruffer, president of the trustees, said they purchased the building with cash on hand; they did not go in debt to purchase the building.
The sale closed Wednesday, July 24.
The building is located at the western end of West Mechanic Street, south of the railroad tracks.
After a July 1, 2012 windstorm tore the roof off part of the current German Township garage at the corner of St. Rt. 2, St. Rt. 66, and Co. Rd. E, “we were desperate. We needed more room,” Ruffer said.
The trustees were contemplating a move long before the windstorm.
“We did not have enough room, and the building wasn’t in the best of shape.”
The windstorm “was kind of the icing on the cake.”
Ruffer said the trustees considered several options.
One was to build a new building, 60 feet by 100 feet.
But, as a governmental agency, the trustees would have to pay prevailing wages for the construction.
Under state law, governmental agencies must pay union wage rates for construction work over $200,000. A private entity can use less expensive, nonunion labor.
He said the trustees could not build a new building in phases so that each phase was under the $200,000 limit.
They looked at existing buildings, such as the Homier Monumental building across St. Rt. 66 to the east from the present garage.
But the trustees own and maintain Archbold Fire Department trucks. The Homier building isn’t big enough to pull some of the larger trucks inside.
“Once again, it was old and not big enough,” he said.
Ruffer said the Dielman building had been suggested before, and had been dismissed. But it was suggested a second time.
“It’s a lot more square footage than what we would build,” Ruffer said.
There’s more area around the building, but it’s not ideally located, he said.
The building has a shop area large enough to accommodate fire trucks. A large concrete block partition was built inside, but can be taken down.
Tender Loving Care
The Dielman building has been vacant for eight years. Ruffer said it needs some TLC before it will be ready for the township.
The trustees want contractors to go through the electrical and plumbing work.
He said the trustees hope to get moved into their new building in mid-fall or by first of the year.
Nothing will be done with the old township garage quickly.
The trustees have a storage building for road salt at their current garage. For the immediate future, they will continue to use that building.
“We’ll probably fix up the old building well enough that somebody might want to use it as a shop,” he said.
“If we find a buyer, we might sell it.”
Dielman Supply was a building supply and redi-mix concrete company. Ruffer said most of the concrete mixing equipment has been removed.
However, a large red tank outside still stands. He said the fire department will use it for some training exercises.
The Dielman building was owned by Shelly Materials, a Thornville-based company with redi-mix concrete and asphalt batching plants throughout the state.
Ruffer said the original asking price was $316,000.
“We made Shelly an offer; they came back with a counter offer. It went back and forth, and we settled on a price,” he said.–David Pugh