Preparations for mediation have begun between city and Bull Moose Tube Company

Linda Trest

Another step has been taken in the reconciliation process between the City of Gerald and Bull Moose Tube Co. (BMT). 

Nathan Nickolaus, the attorney for the city, confirmed that a walkthrough was done on the BMT property Monday. 

Prior to the walkthrough, an attorney for BMT, filed a consent motion for protective order, regarding confidential information. The order was sustained by the Honorable Gael D. Wood, the judge hearing the case, on July 30.

Nickolaus wrote in an email, “The protective order was just to assure that we do not reveal any trade secrets we might have seen while there. The city consented to it. Just routine.”

The walkthrough was conducted by a certified corporate appraiser, according to Steve Grgurich, president of the Board of Aldermen. 

“A copy of the appraisal will be provided for the purpose of ascertaining a fair and equitable market value prior to the mediation session as ordered by the court,” Grgurich said. 

Mediation between the two parties will begin the last week of August.  Both sides agreed to use W. Dudley McCarter of Clayton as the mediator. 

Mayor Cary Parker noted that the city attempted to renegotiate a lease that they claim expired in the 1980s. Bull Moose contends the original lease from the 1960s is still in effect.

Parker says an independent valuation of the property is the next step in the process.

“Yesterday’s walkthrough was the start of the valuation process,” Parker told The Republican on Tuesday. “The valuation will allow BMT and the city to return to the negotiating table with the information they need to resolve the BMT/City of Gerald matters.”

When he ordere, mediation, Judge Woods noted that the City of Gerald needs BMT and BMT needs the City of Gerald.