Mahoning County commissioners unanimously rejected the bid by the nonprofit Warriors Inc. to buy the county’s South Side Annex at 2801 Market St. for $75,000 because it fell short of the advertised minimum bid of $426,667.
In a November bid opening in the county purchasing office, Warriors Inc., 2733 Market St., was the sole bidder for the vacant former county office complex, which was appraised at $640,000.
At Friday’s commissioners’ meeting, James Fortunato, county purchasing director, said he expects the county now will hire an auctioneer and schedule an auction, at which the annex will be sold to the highest bidder.
Warriors, which operates the Eagles Christian Preschool across Hylda Avenue from the annex, said in a document accompanying its bid that it wanted to use the annex to expand its preschool and offer more services to youths and families.
The 97,232-square-foot annex closed after the auto- title department, the last county agency to leave the building, moved to Oakhill Renaissance Place, 345 Oak Hill Ave., in October 2012.
The county bought the 1957-vintage annex, which had been a Sears and Treasure Island department store, from the Cafaro Co. for $1.6 million in 1975.
Warriors Inc. officials could not be reached to comment on the commissioners’ action.
In other business, commissioners approved a $487,806 contract with United Survey Inc. of Oakwood Village, Ohio, for manhole sealing and injection of a plastic lining to prevent leaks inside just over a mile of sewer along Market Street in Beaver Township and along Western Reserve Road.
Earlier this month, commissioners approved a $138,400 contract with Marucci and Gaffney Excavating Inc. of Youngstown for the emergency repair of the Market Street sanitary sewer that collapsed about a quarter-mile south of Western Reserve Road about two months ago and caused sewer backup. About 300 feet of pipe had to be replaced there, according to Bill Coleman, office manager at the county sanitary engineer’s office.
Commissioners will conduct public hearings next month on their May 6 ballot proposal for continuous renewal of a 0.50 percent county sales tax and for an additional 0.25 percent, five-year county sales tax.
The first hearing will be at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 6 at the Covelli Centre, and the second hearing at 10:30 a.m. Jan. 13 in the county courthouse basement.