The city of Pilot Rock closed Friday on the sale of 64 acres of industrial property to an investment partnership for $650,000.

Sale of the Masonite property, in a 20-year contract at 5 percent interest, will earn the city $941,952, according to a statement by city council.

Mayor Virginia Carnes said she hoped the new owner, A&V Investment, whose partners live in Idaho and Washington, would use the property to create jobs in Pilot Rock.

“We’re not in the property management business,”?Carnes said. “The property’s been vacant for eight years. It’s deteriorating.”

Anthony Dushong, an A&V partner, said Friday he was in a meeting and unavailable to comment. Carnes said A&V has given only vague answers to questions about what it intends to do at the site.

But that’s fine for now, she said. Anything the firm intends to do there must meet local zoning and land-use codes, anyway. Whatever becomes of the property should amount to an improvement, she said.

“It’s the older facility. Most of the windows are out of it. It’s lacking water, it’s lacking power,”?she said.

The former wood fabrication plant was donated along with 125 acres by International Paper when it ceased operations there in 2004, according to the city. The city still owns about 300 acres at the site, part of which it leases to the Bark Co. at $200 per acre per month.

The plant site was leased in 2005 to Kinzua Resources LLC, which failed to make its payment of $12,000 a month plus $20,000 per year in 2008, said City Recorder Teri Porter. The city sued Kinzua to recover the payments, a suit that is pending.

Porter said some in Pilot Rock felt the sale was an unwise move. “I think there were some folks in the community felt it was creating revenue on its own, because there’s a bark plant there, it was creating rent for the city,” she said.

Negotiations with A&V took two years, Carnes said. Meanwhile, other interested buyers appeared, but none with whom the city could deal, she said.

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