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Ortonville fire investigation continues



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June 27, 2012 - Ortonville- The cause of a massive fire that destroyed a vacant building in the village remains undetermined.

Brandon Fire Chief Dave Kwapis said Wednesday the investigation continues.

During the June 25 village council meeting, Village Manager John Lyons said the fire is not expected to be an environmental issue. Village officials are in the process of purchasing the property at 255 Narrin Street where the blaze began at about 1:03 a.m. June 18. Atlas, Hadley, Groveland, Independence, Springfield, Metamora and Oxford firefighters arrived at the scene to assist Brandon.

The village, which is purchasing the property once occupied by Ak'Wa Water, was in the process of getting the building condemned, but utilities were still connected because the building is owned by the bank that foreclosed on the property. The village was slated to close on purchase of the Narrin Street property around July 10, but closing is expected to be postponed.

The council unanimously approved in January a motion to pay $2,000 as a refundable deposit to Apex Company for the purchase of the property at 255 Narrin St. Apex, based in Pennsylvania, is a mortgage company that owns the property after a foreclosure. The original asking price was $104,000. After some negotiations, the village council and Apex agreed on a price of $40,000. That price is not expected to change, although clean-up may now be covered by insurance.

The village previously obtained 278 Narrin at no cost due to unpaid back taxes and the council is considering both properties for a waste water treatment plant, which could be used to service businesses and residences within the village as well as Brandon Schools.

Susan covers Brandon Township and Ortonville
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