Off To New York

The Westin New York Entrance

With the blessing of at least a majority of the LCUB Power Board, LCUB Manager, Fred Nelson, LCUB attorney, Shannon Littleton and oddly enough Economic Development president, Pat Phillips are off to New York to negotiate the purchas of the Save-O-Lot Shopping Center. Last week board members voted to allow LCUB Manager, Fred Nelson, to continue negotiations with the owner of the shopping center with the intent that LCUB would buy the old shopping center to move all LCUB operations to the new location.

Citing dilapidated and out dated facilities at the current location, Nelson told the board that the shopping center would be a good site for LCUB to relocate to. Finance manager, Susan Williams, told the board that the money to buy the shopping center would all come from the electric department and that they currently have five million dollars in reserves that could be used to buy and renovate the building with the money to be paid back at a later date. Nelson was asked what would happen to the businesses currently located in the shopping center. Nelson stated there are currently two businesses in the shopping center, Save-O-Lot Grocery and Dollar General with leases that run to 2012. Nelson stated the current owners could "probably pay out the leases according to how bad they want to get rid of the property." Video

The owner of record of the shopping center as of Jan 1, 2008 is TENNESSEE HEIGHTS ASSOCIATES LLC care of THE HEIGHTS REAL ESTATE 369 EAST 62ND STREET  NEW YORK, NY 10021. According to the Secretary Of State web site, Tennessee Heights Associates LLC is an inactive LLC. Heights Real Estate of New York is the owner and has the property listed on their web site with lease prices.

The selling price of the property being batted around is about a million and a half dollars. The current owners of the property paid $735,000.00 for the property in 1997. The current Loudon County property assessment for the shopping center and 3.9 acres of land is $808,600.00. If LCUB does buy the property, all property taxes currently being paid to the county and city will end. This will cost the local governments about $20,000.00 per year in lost property tax revenue. According to sources who wish to remain anonymous,  LCUB is also in discussions with the Post Office who may be interested in leasing a portion of the building with plans to move to the shopping center.

Nelson, Littleton, Philips and possibly others will be staying in the New York Weston Hotel in down town New York. Room rates range from $300 to $445 nightly depending on the room. According to information received here at, they will be heading out around 6:00am Thursday and returning about 6:00pm Saturday. Total round trip air fair $1,245.00.

In this modern age we live, with telephones, faxes, email and computers, it's hard to imagine any reason that three or more people would need to make a personal two day appearance in order to make an offer on a piece of property. The trip will cost rate payers thousands of dollars and the outcome would be the same had the business been conducted over the phone. If the property owners were really interested in selling the property, seems they could have come to Lenoir City where the property is located.