New Jersey city agrees to pay $27M to lease property it sold for $1

The city of Newark, N.J. has agreed to pay $27 million over 30 years to rent property that it previously sold in 2017 for just $1, leading some to question why the city didn't just hold on to the land in the first place.

“We’re paying them for something that we gave them. This is basic math, it doesn’t add up,” Newark resident Debra Salters told NJ.com Wednesday during a City Council meeting, where the deal was narrowly approved in a 5-4 vote.

“We’re paying them for something that we gave them. This is basic math, it doesn’t add up.”

— Debra Salters, Newark resident

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The autonomous Newark Parking Authority plans to erect offices, retail space and a five-story parking deck with 515 spaces at 43-67 Green Street under a $34 million redevelopment agreement with the city, the news site reported. Newark will rent storage space for its municipal court, relocate its finance department to the property and will rent 258 working spaces for use during working hours, the report said.

“This is not the Parking Authority pushing this on the city. A redevelopment agreement was passed by this council,” Anthony Mack, executive director of the parking authority, told the council. “We’re actually subsidizing the city as we’re constructing this.”

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The property is assessed at more than $10 million, according to state property records. The agreement allows the city to also lease 26,000 square feet of space. The proposed parking deck will satisfy the city’s prior agreement with the New Jersey Devils pro hockey club to build one.