Court awards title of Herring Hotel to City of Belle Plaine

Herring Hotel in Belle Plaine.

BELLE PLAINE – In an order from Iowa District Court Jan. 5, 2020, title of the Herring Hotel property in Belle Plaine was awarded to the city of Belle Plaine.

The city of Belle Plaine filed a civil case against the Herring Hotel Foundation on April 9, 2019. A hearing in the case was scheduled for Dec. 3, 2019. Both parties agreed to a stipulation, and it was filed on Dec. 24, 2019, according to the order issued by Judge Patrick R. Grady.

The stipulation included the following statement of facts.

  • a. That there has been no work completed to remedy the nuisance that exists on the property.
  • b. That the September 2019 installment of real estate taxes were delinquent as of November 27, 2019 and there is now a penalty and interest added.
  • c. That there are no current utilities or services provided to the building.
  • d. That the building is not currently occupied.
  • e. That the Herring Hotel Foundation had been administratively dissolved by the Iowa Secretary of State.

The stipulation included the following deadlines for the foundation to comply with in order for the petition to be dismissed.

  • a. Resignation of Kristine Pope and members of her family from the Board and provide a list of new board members and their roles by December 10, 2019.
  • b. Provide proof of submission of the most recently submitted 501(c)(3) application including tracking number by December 15, 2019.
  • c. Reinstatement of the Foundation with the Iowa Secretary of State and proof of submission by December 18, 2019.
  • d. Provide proof insurance by December 15, 2019 with the City and Grieder’s listed as certificate holders.
  • e. Execution of the indemnity agreement by all Board Members by December 15, 2019.

If the deadlines weren’t met, or if the brick removal was not completed and weather-tight material was not installed, the foundation would be in breach of the stipulation, and default should be entered. The court found the foundation to be in breach of the stipulation. The court said the property is an abandoned property, according to Section 657A.10A of the Iowa Code, and judgment was ordered in favor of the city, and the title was awarded to the city.

Costs were taxed to the city.

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