RACINE — The City of Racine’s Executive Committee met in closed session Thursday evening, at least in part to discuss an $800,000 loan the city proposed writing off in June.
The Executive Committee includes Mayor John Dickert and five aldermen — Dennis Wiser, Q.A. Shakoor II, Melissa Lemke, Jeff Coe and Terry McCarthy. Dickert said Friday that the meeting was called to keep the aldermen informed on the latest with the loan, made to the now-defunct Main-Lake LLC, between 1993 and 1995 to fund housing at 419-425 Main St.
“It was really just advising the council as to what’s going on,” the mayor said. “A lot of council members have been asking about it so we just wanted to say this is where we’re at.”
State law allows city officials to meet in closed session to discuss strategy with legal counsel. Dickert couldn’t comment on the exact progress made on evaluating the loan.
“We still have to compile some information,” he said.
The city initially announced it would not be collecting on the loan in a news release on June 15. A day later, at a meeting of the city’s Loan Board of Review, Deputy City Attorney Nicole Larsen requested additional time for the City Attorney’s Office to look into the loan a bit further.
“We would request deferral until the next regular Loan Board meeting to give us an opportunity to get some additional information and present it to the committee and the council, ultimately,” Larsen said at the time.
That next meeting, originally scheduled for July 14, was cancelled for undisclosed reasons. Larsen said the loan would be discussed at the August Loan Board meeting, which is set to take place on Thursday, Aug. 11.
According to the June release, Elaine Ekes, the city’s consulting attorney, determined that the city would be unable to recoup the loan because the Main-Lake enterprise has dissolved. There was also no collection agreement with Main-Lake’s former parent company, The Alexander Company Inc., a Madison-based real estate developer, or any sort of mortgage taken out on the loan.
The Alexander Company’s president, Joe Alexander, said his company ceased involvement in Main-Lake in late 1997.