Senior center sale starts from scratch

By Jillian Marshall

April 17, 2013 Updated Apr 17, 2013 at 11:45 PM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) All signs pointed to a local nonprofit organization buying and renovating the Greenman Senior Center. That was until early this week, when other entities out-bid the nonprofit in what some officials are calling acts below board.

City Council voted down the chance for the nonprofit Opportunities for Broome to buy the Greenman Senior Center at 37 Pine Street.

The organization's $75,000 bid on the building fell short in the face of additional last-minute bids.

Councilman John Matzo says he was planning on voting down the purchase since he heard their offer.

"I still feel the property is worth a lot more than what it was being sold for to OFB, or what OFB offered. I think we need to put properties back on the tax rolls," Matzo said.

Some of the council member's minds were swayed by an 11th-hour letter of interest and another bid that was $30,000 more than the asking price.

Council President Terri Renia said she believes the late bids were dirty business.

One council member says the city didn't give the sale of the building a fair chance.

"We still could have marketed it better. That's where it all came down to, it has nothing to do with what's been offered now," Matzo said.

The selling process for the former senior center will start anew.

The council will hire a commercial realtor and advertise in New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

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