April 03, 2001 11:00 pm

By The Observer

ELGIN The newest industrial park in Elgin soon will belong to the city.

Responding to an offer from the private Union County Economic Development Corporation, the Elgin City Council agreed Tuesday night to purchase 14 acres of the parks original 18 acres for $85,000 plus closing costs.

Two weeks ago, a group of city councilors had accused UCEDC of being uncooperative and unwilling to develop the land. Their comments were made at a Union County commissioners meeting.

The UCEDC had worked for more than a year with Boise Cascade to come to a land trade agreement in which UCEDC would get the Elgin land in exchange for property it owned in the Baum Industrial Park, east of Island City.

Representatives from the county and city met with the UCEDC board following the presentation to the commissioners to talk through the situation, and came to an understanding that the UCEDC would put together an offer to sell the land to Elgin.

The offer was officially accepted, city councilor Marc Stauffer said this morning. Were gratefully appreciative of the offer they made.

Stauffers gratefulness comes in part because the UCEDC had set an original price of $10,000 an acre for land in the Elgin southside industrial park, he said. The price was reduced since it would be a municipality buying the land.

Elgin City Administrator Joe Garlitz said he and council representatives would be going to the county commissioners today to talk about acquiring economic development funds to help Elgin with the purchase.

The city has some funds available, Stauffer said, but would have to determine how various funding sources would come together for the purchase.

The council plans to discuss funding options at its 7 p.m. meeting Tuesday at City Hall.