January 10, 2013 | Volume 43, No. 1

Ferry land sale deal finalized

Three Haines Borough-owned parcels near the ferry terminal will be sold to state after months of price negotiations.

The state initially appraised the land and offered $302,000, but borough manager Mark Earnest said this sounded like a low-ball offer and brought in an independent appraiser.

“We contacted our attorney who worked with an appraiser...and his values were appreciably higher than the appraiser that was contracted by the state DOT,” Earnest said.

The borough appraiser, who charged $12,000, said the land was worth about $360,000. The two finally agreed on $338,400.

“I felt we had done about as much as we could in terms of getting the values adjusted to what we felt was more appropriate. But I guess when both sides leave the process feeling a little bit unsatisfied I think we’ve probably struck the right number there,” Earnest said.

The state purchased the land as part of the ferry terminal improvement project, which will change the state-owned portion of the dock to a catwalk system. Instead of repairing a failed cell causing a sinkhole on the dock, the state decided to change the dock face and install new dolphins and catwalks to tie up the ships.

Construction starts in the fall.