Brumfield taxes paid, new management prospect sought

Published 12:02 am Wednesday, August 22, 2012

NATCHEZ — The City of Natchez has paid most of the back taxes owed on Brumfield Apartments and has a prospect in the works that could return the building to its former residential status.

The property, which was formerly owned by Gleichman and Company and was abandoned by its management company, Stanford Management, in February 2011, was in the process of being foreclosed on when the city bought the mortgage on it from Britton & Koontz Bank in January.

City Clerk Donnie Holloway said he city paid approximately $61,400 in back taxes on the property from 2009 and 2010 last week. The remaining $28,550 in taxes for 2011 will go to the tax sale this month, Holloway said. Those taxes and any prorated taxes will be paid once Brumfield is sold.

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Mayor Butch Brown said the city is working with a housing group that is interested in rehabilitating Brumfield and opening it as low- to moderate-income housing.

“I have a lot of confidence (in this group) because of the quality of operations they have,” Brown said.

Brown declined to give the name of the group until the deal is finalized. He said it remains to be seen if the group will lease or buy Brumfield.

The group, Brown said, is approximately 25 days to a month away from finalizing the deal.

“I’m hoping they can get their program together quickly so they can begin immediately,” he said.

The city, Brown said, is also involved in assisting Gleichman and Company with trying to reopen Oak Towers, or the old general hospital, for housing.

Stanford Management abandoned both Oak Towers and Brumfield in February 2011.

Brown said he is providing background information to Gleichman on the old hospital and also sharing what the city would like to see done with the property and helping work out details of who would operate it.

“All of these things we’re doing now, we’re going to add ribbons and tie knots really tight so we can guarantee a better, safer, cleaner and more productive use of the property in the past,” Brown said.

Gleichman is negotiating with prospective buyers for the building and has given the buyers until the end of the month to make a reasonable offer, Brown said.