Waterloo Council members deny incentive funds to local developer | News

WATERLOO — City Council members Monday declined to give a local developer incentives for remodeling a blighted house.

The house, at 1606 Williston Ave., was worked on by Robert Castro Construction. The company is a rehabilitation contractor for other blighted houses and built a commercial building in the city, records show. City planning director Noel Anderson said Castro thought $10,000 in incentives were included in his original development agreement, but they were not. The City Council decided on a 5-2 vote Monday not to provide him with the funds.

The city has an incentive program aimed at securing renovations for abandoned homes. Waterloo will sell dilapidated homes for $5,000 to developers, and will refund the $5,000 when the home receives a certificate of occupancy. The city then provides an additional $5,000 reward payment for improvements.

“He signed a contract that did not have the incentive included,” Council member Sharon Juon said. “I don’t think we have any exposure for just adhering to what was in the contract that both parties signed.”

Anderson said another planning employee handled the original development agreement. The agreements are drafted by an attorney, reviewed by Anderson, signed by the developer and sent to City Council. If approved, the mayor and city clerk sign the agreements.