Pilgrim's Pride land purchase approved, with conditions - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Pilgrim's Pride land purchase approved, with conditions

Mayor Ronnie Marks (Source: Decatur Daily) Mayor Ronnie Marks (Source: Decatur Daily)

The Athens City Council authorized Mayor Ronnie Marks to buy a vacant and rundown chicken processing plant from Pilgrim's Pride Corp. for $550,000, but with conditions.

Council members will have a chance to review results of environmental studies of the 31.7-acre property and demolition costs before the end of a 120-day inspection period and before any purchase.

The council, at its meeting Monday night, approved in a 5-0 vote an amendment to a resolution regarding the purchase that formalizes the process that Marks said he had intended: The results of any inspections, including a phase two environmental study and evaluations of demolition plans and costs, will be discussed with the council before the purchase of the property.

Also, Marks' authority to carry out the purchase is conditioned on the mayor briefing the council on the results of any tests and inspections so it has the opportunity to terminate the agreement if it wishes.

"This is a great first step," Marks said after the vote. "We've been working on this for almost five years."

The plant, near Pryor Street and Sussex Drive, closed in 2009. Alabama Department of Environmental Management crews are expected to start drilling wells, possibly six to seven across the property, next Monday as part of the phase two testing, Marks said.

Read more at Decatur Daily

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