Don’t Buy Your Season Tickets Just Yet

Our City Council on Tuesday past voted unanimously to approve the site of the downtown arena, even if it required the use of eminent domain to clear the job site.

Well, that arena will cross the desk of Mr. William “Billy” Abraham. He owns the property at 212 W Overland, the former El Pisto and El Norteño Deluxe. That’s about in the middle of the proposed footprint of the new arena.

Don’t you imagine that Mr. Abraham has been waiting his whole life for an opportunity like this? Don’t you think he’s salivating in his jail cell at the prospect of a prolonged legal battle over eminent domain?

Maybe a local site selection team would have appreciated the significance of the recalcitrant landowner, but not the out-of-town site selection team hired by City Council. Some people say those nice gentlemen from out of town got paid $5 million. Is that right?

I would have done it for $20 and a quart of Busch and the city would have been just as good off.

Just sayin’.


  1. Abraham, or any other property owner facing Emminent Domain for the Arena Site, cannot “prolong” a dispute over value very long. After rejecting the City’s initial offer, a Special Commission (three citizens) is appointed by a District Judge, a hearing is held in front of the Special Commissioners where both parties make value arguments and then the Commissioners make their award judgement. That becomes a dollar value which the City places into the Court Registry. The City can then take possession of the property, the owner can withdraw the award (or not), and can elect to continue the fight at a District Court level. No matter, at that point the property is the City’s and demolition can commence. This usually only takes a couple of months. Dave Etzold, ETZOLD & CO Commercial Real Estate Consultants

  2. Thanks for the kind reference. Back in the day Billy and I did bad things together. He always said he would be famous. I thought he was just high. Apparently he was a prescient wizard. Every now and then the sun shines on a dog’s ass.

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