County buys former Central Bank building for added office space

Clay County is purchasing the Central Bank location in downtown Liberty at 16 W. Franklin St. to provide more space for county staff.

LIBERTY — Clay County is purchasing the Central Bank location in downtown Liberty to provide more space for county staff.

The building, located behind the Courier-Tribune office at 16 W. Franklin St., had been home to BankLiberty, which merged with Central Bank of the Midwest in 2019. The county, to the consternation of some county residents who balked at the price and questioned the need for added space for staff saying the County Administration Building across the street had space going unused, had been leasing office space in the facility for about 18 months prior to the purchase. The leased space of about 4,000 square feet had been used for finance department and other staff and cost $5,000 per month.

“Central Bank offered the building for sale due to their decision to close the facility. The move allows the county to officially acquire previously leased office space, while at the same time taking advantage of some obvious efficiencies in a location virtually adjacent to the County Administration building,” states a county release. “In addition to being an ideal space for official county offices, the location provides much-needed parking for employees and the public, is already equipped to securely store important county files and records and offers some flexibilities that previously were unavailable to the public in inclement weather as well as high traffic seasons.”

Clay County bid $660,000 for the building, which, according to the county release, has been appraised with a value of $750,000. For the cost, Presiding Commissioner Jerry Nolte said the county will get about 6,000 square feet and use of features like the pneumatic tube system that may make financial transactions like those completed by the collector’s officer easier for staff and the public.

Specifics on what the building will be used for however, have yet to be determined. Nolte said Clay County Administrator Tom Salisbury and Donna Koontz, deputy administrator of facilities, will work with staff to determine best use.

Closing on the transaction is anticipated in May.

Managing Editor Amanda Lubinski can be reached at amanda.lubinski@mycouriertribune.com, 903-6001 or @myCTAmanda1 on Twitter.

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