Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Outcome of the Auction

It was a full house at City Hall this morning for the auction of properties seized by the City for nonpayment of taxes. As many predicted, the bidding was brisk for 405 Warren Street, even though, as of Thursday, there were still tenants in place in what was described by one person who toured the building as not an apartment building but an SRO.

Someone opened the bidding for 405 Warren Street with the minimum ($264,041.87) but immediately dropped out as the price rose rapidly by modest increments of $1,000 and $2,000. It seemed at first that John Knott and Bill Better were competing bidders, since they appeared to take turns upping the bid of a woman in the first row. It turns out Knott and Better were bidding together for an entity known as Warren Hudson LLC, and the woman they were bidding against was Mark Greenberg's secretary, who was bidding on behalf of Galvan Partners. Galvan Partners ended up being the high bidder at $354,000, and another building will soon be added to the Galvan inventory.

When 318 State Street was first offered for sale, there were no bidders, so assistant city attorney Carl G. Whitbeck, who was conducting the auction, moved on to 209-211 Columbia Street. 

The minimum bid for 209-211 Columbia Street, rumored to have been a den of illegal gambling back in the day, was $19,309. The bidding started with a raise of $1, then $190, then increments of $1,000, until the price rose 70 percent to $33,000. The winning bidders were Knott and Better, Warren Hudson LLC.

At a minimum bid of $17,243.58, there were also no bidders for the vacant lot at 24 Tanners Lane either. So, as is customary, Whitbeck invited bids of any amount on the two properties: 318 State Street and 24 Tanners Lane. 

Joe Rapp opened the bidding for 318 State Street at $10,000. That was soon bid up to $37,000--almost the amount the City sought. The highest bid--$37,000--was made by Vincent Barral. Gossips wishes him well. There is a soft spot in my heart for this sweet little early vernacular house with a two-story bay, which was very likely added later.

The vacant lot at 24 Tanners Lane didn't fare as well. Someone bid $1,000 for it, and that was that. Since the bids for 318 State Street and 24 Tanners Lane are less than the amount of back taxes owed on the properties, the bids must be accepted by the Common Council. 

The City did all right this morning. The total amount they had to recoup from the sale of the four properties was $339,448.58. Even with the low ball bid on 24 Tanners Lane, the total of the high bids is $425,000.


  1. There is something unsettling about the number of properties owned by Galvan. Should we expect to someday rename this fair city "Galvan on Hudson"?

  2. Does anyone remember how close Tricky Ricky was to Eleanor Ambose? Guess her pockets aren't as deep as the Galvan group. Is there a pattern here with would-be developers?