The City of Brooksville owns its water tower again after inadvertently selling it in a real estate deal earlier this year.
In April, the City of Brooksville announced that the City Council had agreed to subdivide and sell a portion of the “Water Tower Property” to Robert Read of Read Property Ventures, LLC.
Consisting of a commercial lot with an existing one-story garage, the Water Tower Property is also the location of the City’s water tower. The property was surveyed in December 2020, according to Charlene F. Kuhn, public information officer (PIO) and special projects coordinator for the City Manager’s Office.
Initially one parcel, the City divided the property to separate the garage, allow for enough parking to accommodate a business and retain public parking for the Water Tower.
Read, who is a certified personal trainer, purchased the property intending to renovate the garage building to establish Downtown Athletics, LLC, a business that will offer personal and group fitness training activities.
According to Kuhn, Read learned that his purchase included the City’s water tower after visiting the Property Appraiser’s office on June 11.
“When Mr. Read approached the Property Appraiser to obtain a new address the error was identified,” she said.
County records show that Read conveyed the water tower back to the City of Brooksville via a warranty deed.
Exactly who is at fault for the mistake is uncertain, but Kuhn said that the Water Town deal was not the reason former City Community Development Director Chris Anderson resigned.
“Mr. Anderson had already submitted his resignation dated June 7 to be effective June 16, and was considered to be in a non-working notice period when the City was made aware on June 11,” Kuhn said.
She declined further comment.
Brooksville businessman John Lee is hoping others will join him at the June 21 meeting of the Brooksville City Council to learn how the City’s water tower was included in the sale in the first place.
“He (Read) notified the city (about the water tower inclusion), but if he hadn’t been the kind of person to do that, who knows what would have happened,” said Lee, owner of the Coney Island Drive-In in Brooksville and who along with others spearheaded the Brooksville Blueberry Festival. “A group of us are trying to organize as many residents and taxpayers as we can to attend the meeting – they have a right to know how this happened.”
The next Brooksville City Council meeting is scheduled for June 21 at 7 p.m.