O.P.P. Long Sault HQ lease extended with South Stormont

SD&G O.P.P. headquarters at 4 Mille Roches Road in Long Sault, Ont. The township has been able to negotiate a lease extension for another five years with the O.P.P. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

LONG SAULT – The Township of South Stormont has been able to renegotiate its lease with the Ontario Provincial Police after what are described as “protracted negotiations.”

The original 10-year lease in January 2010 had an option of two, 5-year extensions. The agreement expired in June. The two sides have been in talks for a year, according to the township’s CAO.

Under the new deal, the province will pay $252,526 per year for the office building at 4 Mille Roches Road – up from the previous payment of $244,380 – an increase of 3.3 per cent.

A township council report says the Ontario government farms out lease negotiations to a third party. In this case, CBRE: United States Commercial Real Estate Services.

“CBRE has not been easy to work with and we actually held our guns and said, no, we’re not prepared to accept some of the (comparable) properties,” CAO Debi LucasSwitzer told council last month.

She said it used “strip malls in Cornwall” and “a variety of other things” as a comparison.

“I’m pleased to say this probably is one of the best agreements so far that’s come across in terms of negotiating for O.P.P. facilities,” LucasSwitzer said.

Even though the lease payment is 3.3 per cent higher, the township will end up with the same amount of money per year because the extra covers the negotiating fee it has to pay to CBRE.

Mayor Bryan McGillis added that the township is “close” to getting the building paid off.

Under the new agreement, the township has agreed to take on grass cutting and snow removal for the property.