As of Friday, the Indiana Theatre is listed among properties with delinquent taxes to be auctioned as part of a Vigo County certificate sale.
That tax certificate sale, conducted as a live auction, is slated for 10 a.m. Tuesday, but whether the property remains in the sale or gets removed remains unclear.
County officials conducted research on the downtown theater, citing concerns the historic downtown structure could not be included in the certificate sale. That's because the property's ownership is listed under Indiana Theatre LLC, an entity listed as part of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy for David R. Lundstrom, who is registered agent of the limited liability corporation.
Lundstrom's bankruptcy was filed Dec. 17, 2018, in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana. The Indiana Theatre LLC is listed in documents in the court filing.
John Villa, a Vigo County deputy auditor coordinating the certificate sale, said the county office researched the issue, contacting Lundstrom's attorney, who told officials the theater could be included in the certificate sale.
An email was sent and telephone messages were left Friday with Lundstrom's Indianapolis attorney, David R. Krebs, seeking comment. Krebs is representing Lundstrom in the bankruptcy. Messages were also left Friday for Lundstrom.
"We may pull the Indiana Theatre if we find there is reason to remove it from the tax sale," Villa said. "We will and can still do that up to the sale. We have not found that reason yet," Villa said.
The Indiana Theatre, located at 7th and Ohio, is on the National Register of Historical Places. It was included in a property tax "A" sale in September, but did not sell. That was prior to the Lundstrom's bankruptcy filing.
In the first tax sale, the theater owner would have had a year to redeem the property back from any potential buyer through payment of unpaid taxes, penalties and liens.
Since the theater building did not sale, the Vigo County Board of Commissioners moved it into a certificate sale. The building is now listed on the certificate sale with a minimum bid of $102,424, a figure that was revised downward after a review of the property tax, Villa said.
If the minimum bid is met by a bidder at the live auction, the property owner has 120 days -- four months -- to redeem the property, paying taxes, fees and liens.
The theater building has $120,530 in accumulated unpaid taxes due this year. Typically, when a property is offered in a certificate sale, it is offered for less than taxes owed in an attempt to regain some of the unpaid tax, Villa said.
In March 2013, Lundstrom helped form Indiana Theatre LLC to buy the Indiana Theatre for $200,000 from KAE Corp. owners Roger and Kathy Aleshire, transforming it into the Indiana Theatre Event Center.
The original theater opened Jan. 28, 1922. It was designed by famed theater architect John Eberson in Spanish Andalusian style. The two-story building has 31,646 square feet.