Freeport Mayoral Candidates Spar Over Lincoln Mall Roof Leak

FREEPORT (WIFR) -- There's also a deadline for the owners of Freeport's Lincoln Mall. The City of Freeport has given them 15 days to repair the buildings leaky roof. Sounds like a clear-cut situation, but it's actually causing quite the stir with two of the city's mayoral candidates.

Jon Staben and Former Freeport Mayor Jim Gitz held a news conference Monday about the mall. They accuse Mayor George Gaulrapp of using the roof problems as an excuse to bulldoze it and argue the city isn't doing enough to help the property owner fix the roof.

"This is a business that cries out for us to work with them to get the roof fix. This city has money for everything it wants to do except work with small businesses and people that are not apart of it's team," Gitz said.

"We cannot afford to lose these businesses, there has to be a way to resolve the dispute between what appears to be the city and the mall over some roof leaks," Staben said.

Mayor Gaulrapp says all of their allegations are just not true.

"It's unfortunate that he's using a political platform to spread rumors and lies like this. It's plain and simple, do you want (to believe) the Mayor that's telling you the truth, we have the paper work right here that states we want the buildings roof repaired, or do you want to listen to some rumors like that," Gaulrapp said.

Gaulrapp says the building's owner has money set aside to fix the roof. Right now there are 12 businesses inside the mall, including the Salvation Army and a Seniors Center.

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