By Roger Utnehmer
The Sturgeon Bay City Council went into closed session after a forty-five-minute meeting Tuesday to discuss a controversial west-side waterfront hotel and the acquisition of yet-to-be-named property.
Council Member Kelly Catarozoli argued against the closed session. She said the city is considering significant land purchases and the public should know about it.
Council Member David Ward argued for the closed session. City Attorney Randy Nesbitt said property prices skyrocket when word gets out about possible acquisitions.
Joining Catarozoli in voting for open discussions were Barb Allman and Laurel Hauser.
Topics expected to be considered in the closed meeting are the development agreement with hotel developer Bob Papke and settlement discussions conducted last week in Madison with representatives of the city, Friends of the Sturgeon Bay Public Waterfront and the Department of Natural Resources. Papke announced recently that he was pulling out of the hotel agreement and filed a notice of claim with the city demanding more than $500,000.
No public statements were made by council members about what properties are under consideration for purchase, however, the proposal came to the council from the Waterfront Redevelopment Authority, according to Catarozoli.