By Kirstan Knowlton
GORHAM — Local business owner Bob Chapman recently signed a purchased and sales agreement for the seven remaining properties previously owned by Munce’s Superior Petroleum.
With a final closing date set for Friday, Sept. 22, Chapman will become the owner of the properties.
Chapman will pay a total of $2,000 for lots, 611, 614, 615, 616, 619, 620, 624, all located on the northern part of Main St. in Gorham. Cleanup on the sites has already begun.
The assessed total value of the seven properties is $1,597,700 and the back taxes owed up to April 30, of this year total $570,827.79. Chapman's agreement with the town specifies he will not be responsible for back taxes or 2017 taxes.
“While we realize that the town did not recoup the taxes and interest owed on these properties, we had to look at the bigger picture and future health of the Gorham community,” said Town Manager Robin Frost.
In a follow up interview with Chapman, he explained that he bought the properties with the intent of attracting new businesses to the area.
“We want to bring in small businesses to the area, around 4-12 employees each,” Chapman said.
Chapman will complete a clean up of the properties before bringing in a surveyor to determine the best way to use the properties for new businesses.
Chapman hopes to attract businesses from all over with a variety services or products.
“Mr. Chapman has a history of bringing new business to the North Country and has worked successfully with the state of New Hampshire in that endeavor. We want to be able to benefit from that talent and expertise by bringing new jobs to Gorham. We look forward to the new development of those properties,” said Frost.
Two local business owners have now bought all eight of the original properties owned by Munce’s Superior Petroleum. The only property Chapman did not purchase was 437 Main St. in Gorham, which was purchased for $10,000 by Christopher Bean, owner of P and L Cote.