Chisholm film studio in arrears

Following a closed session on Feb. 22, the Chisholm City Council directed City Attorney Bryan Lindsay to begin the default process against Ironbound Studios Minnesota. The company has occupied part of City Hall since it began a lease-purchase agreement with the city in October 2015.

Chisholm Mayor Todd Scaia told the News Tribune on Tuesday that Ironbound owed the city $13,800 as of Feb. 22.

“I have not heard anything from Ironbound Studios or any of their principals or executives since the City Council directed the city attorney to take the action on behalf of the city. I have requested a meeting with Ironbound officials and have not been contacted regarding my request,” Scaia said on Tuesday.

Repeated attempts by the News Tribune to contact Ironbound Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Erb this week were unsuccessful.

Mary Brascugli-Rosett, Ironbound’s vice president of studio operations, sent a statement to the News Tribune on Thursday saying that the studio’s lease-purchase agreement with the city involved “promises by both parties to perform certain acts set forth in the agreement” and that Ironbound “has and will continue to perform its obligations set forth in the lease agreement.”

Ironbound has made more than $250,000 in improvements to City Hall as part of its lease obligations and the city was also required to make improvements to Ironbound’s space as part of the agreement, according to the statement. Ironbound says Chisholm received a $250,000 infrastructure grant from the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board in February 2016 for that purpose, but has not made the improvements.

“Despite receiving this grant and their stated commitment to use the grant for these improvements, the city has refused to use the grant for the required improvements. Our business is dependent on these improvements and the city’s inaction is preventing us from effectively operating our business as a result,” the statement read.

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