The Denison city council approved a $197,723.13 lien against a property the city had demolished in May. The owner of a property was at the city council meeting Monday to raise concerns regarding the lien the city was placing on his property.

The building that had been at 2301 S. Austin Avenue and was previously occupied as office space.

Denison City Manager Jud Rex said the city has been dealing with the property for nearly two years.

“The city is happy to remove the unsafe structure,” Rex said. “We hope the property can develop into something in the future. In December 2017 the city posted it as an unsafe structure. There were two public hearings before the city council approved the demolition. There was ample time for the property owner to present plans to the city council. They didn’t do it.”

The city reported the building as unsafe on Dec. 12, 2017. On March 5, 2018 the city council ordered the demolition of the structure. A contract to demolish the building was awarded Feb. 18, 2019. On April 10 the asbestos abatement and demolition began. The project was completed May 30.

At the city council meeting Monday attorney William Shaw representing the owner of the proper requested the city reconsider the amount of the lien saying his client offered to do the demolition for about one-fourth of the price listed.

John Buchanan, former owner of the property, questioned the validity of the claim the building had asbestos and requested the credentials of the team that assessed the building. He also requested the reports from the team. Rex said all of that information was readily available as public information.

Rex also the bulk of the cost of the contract was due to the asbestos removal and the contract was sent out for open bid, the owner of the property had every opportunity to bid on the job.