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Longhorn/VFW committee to meet

A committee tasked with resolving the situation with the shared wall at the Longhorn/VFW site in downtown Mitchell will meet for the first time Wednesday afternoon.

The committee will meet at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Mayor's Office at City Hall, 612 N. Main St.

Mayor Ken Tracy said Monday that he does not plan to open the meeting to the public.

The committee was formed at the June 17 council meeting in hopes of resolving the situation with an unstable, shared wall between the old Longhorn Bar and VFW more quickly and efficiently.

The committee has not met because VFW officials have been getting estimates for a new wall to replace the crumbling, shared wall, Tracy said during Monday's Mitchell City Council meeting.

Tracy, Council Vice President Dan Allen and Councilman Phil Carlson are on the committee, along with three VFW members.

Pat Ziegler, VFW post commander, told the council he believes the cost estimates for a replacement wall will be ready by Wednesday.

"Maybe we can make some progress and get this buttoned up," he said.

Demolition of the former Longhorn began May 14 but was halted two days later when it was discovered the building's shared wall with the VFW was unstable.

The upper floor of the shared wall was removed earlier this month at a cost of $28,900, which has since allowed the VFW to reopen. The lounge had been closed for about a month because of the situation.

The demolition of the former Longhorn has already cost the city at least $170,900, according to contractor Jared Balvin, owner of Ironman Construction, of Tyndall.