Oconomowoc council approves offer for Fong’s Garden property

By Ryan Billingham - Freeman Staff

July 5, 2014

OCONOMOWOC — The Oconomowoc Common Council approved an offer to purchase Fong’s Garden Chinese restaurant, 109 E. Main St., from owner Tommy Lin at its regular meeting on Tuesday.

The council discussed the offer in a closed-session meeting on June 17. According to a memo sent to the council by Director of Economic Development Bob Duffy on June 25, the city received an offer from Lin’s lawyer stating that Lin would accept $1.2 million for the property and business.

Duffy wrote that the city has conducted appraisals of the property’s real estate and business values. He said an offer of $525,000 is appropriate.

The council approved the offer in the meeting’s consent agenda on Tuesday. Consent agenda items are used to pass several items at once, often housekeeping items. There was no discussion of the Fong’s Garden offer.

Mayor Jim Daley said it is the first formal offer to Lin since negotiations on the property stalled last year.

In October, Lin was charged with possessing child pornography, but those charges were dropped this month after Lin’s lawyer argued successfully that the Oconomowoc Police Department’s search warrant was not properly executed and therefore the evidence collected was inadmissible.

Daley said the city “looks forward to Mr. Lin’s response” and he hopes the property can be acquired to complete a downtown park called the Village Green.

Lin has 10 days from the date he receives the offer to accept or decline.