City, trapeze school agree on lease terms

Published 6:01 am Thursday, February 26, 2009

By Staff
Insurance, grantsremain to be settledbefore school opens
Contributing Editor
The owner of a temporary trapeze school to be located on Washington’s waterfront will pay $150 a month in rent and a $300 security deposit.
That decision was reached during the City Council’s meeting Monday when the city and Adrian Soloman agreed to an eight-month lease of city-owned land at 141-143 Waters St., which is between the North Carolina Estuarium and the former Maola building. The lease runs from March 20 to November 20. Soloman and her father, Doug Soloman, first discussed the Inner Banks Trapeze School with the council in November 2008.
At Monday’s meeting, Mayor Judy Meier Jennette said she suggested the Solomans pay $150 in rent per month. Soloman said because the trapeze school would use only 38 percent of the land, the rent should be 38 percent of $150, or $57.
Councilman Archie Jennings said $57 “seems like a very low amount.” He didn’t buy Soloman’s argument about paying 38 percent of the suggested $150 because the school would only use 38 percent of the property.
He said $150 a month is “an entirely fair amount.”
The mayor said she determined $150 a month would be a fair amount because it would allow the city to at least recover the tax value of the property. Councilman Gil Davis said a monthly rent of $150 would be in line with other fees and rents the city receives for the use of similar city-owned properties or facilities.
Adrian Soloman said she plans to have the trapeze functioning as soon as appropriate insurance coverage is secured and grants are obtained to fund programs the school will offer. The lease requires Inner Banks Trapeze School to carry workers’ compensation insurance, bodily injury insurance and general liability insurance.
Mayor Pro Tempore Doug Mercer, who voted against approving the school but voted to approve the lease, made it clear that if the school proves successful during its eight months on the waterfront, he wants it moved to another location when the lease expires.
The trapeze school will require lighting and an 8-foot-tall chain-link fence, according to the Solomans. The school requires no permanent structure, with its poles, nets, guy wires, bars and other equipment easy to disassemble, they noted.
The Solomans expect the trapeze school to attract tourists.
The trapeze school would not necessarily train people to work as trapeze artists for a circus, but primarily serve as a recreational activity. The school’s basic program is a two-hour class for about eight to 10 people, with each person paying $40 to take the class, the Solomans said in November.