(CBS Connecticut) — UConn trustees today approved the sale of the West Hartford campus to the town of West Hartford. West Hartford officials approved the campus purchase a day earlier.
The sale price is $1-million, down from the previous $5-million price.
UConn General Counsel Richard Orr says because of cuts in the governor’s proposed budget, the town was concerned that it would not be able to afford the original purchase price.
“It’s economics 101 that the fair price is what a willing buyer is willing to pay, and what a willing seller is willing to take, but a footnote to that is the buyer’s ability to pay,” Orr said.
The town also argued that PCB’s in window caulking and soil would have to be paid to be cleaned up.
Orr says under the agreement, the school would benefit, if the town decides to sell the property to a developer or some other third party within nine years.
“If the town keeps it as a park, they pay $1-million and we are done,” Orr said. “But if the town flips it and gets a higher price, because it is a UConn asset, we will get 90 percent of the purchase price, but they will effectively get their $1-million refunded, and they will get the other 10 percent.”
A description of the deal prepared for the trustees by Orr’s office says “The town would receive a refund of the purchase price paid by the town, UConn would receive 90 percent of the price paid by the third party and the town would receive 10 percent of that price.”
Officials are still working on language that could provide a so-called off-ramp, allowing the sale to be cancelled.