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Le Mars-area farmland sells for over $5.1M; part of proceeds will fund scholarships
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Le Mars-area farmland sells for over $5.1M; part of proceeds will fund scholarships

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Land sale for schools

Le Mars attorneys Gene Collins, left, and Mike Murphy talk Nov. 16, at 120 acres of farmland located southeast of Le Mars, along Plymouth County road K-49. The parcel was among nearly 500 acres from two estates that sold for over $5.1 million Wednesday. The seven school foundations in Plymouth County will equally divide 40 percent of the proceeds. 

LE MARS, Iowa -- Four Plymouth County farms with a collective 476.67 acres sold Wednesday at auction for more than $5.1 million, Le Mars attorney W.E. "Gene" Collins said Friday. 

The seven school foundations in Plymouth County -- Akron-Westfield, Hinton, Kingsley-Pierson, Le Mars public, Le Mars Gehlen Catholic, Remsen St. Mary's and Remsen-Union schools -- will receive their share of 40 percent of the proceeds. 

The farmland was part of the estates of Le Mars siblings Marjorie and Clifford Perry, who died in 2016 and 2008, respectively. Neither had any children or surviving spouses at the time of their deaths. 

Their trusts stipulated that the land be sold at auction, with 40 percent of the proceeds going to the school foundations and the remaining 60 percent going to their surviving family members. 

Each school foundation, according to the trusts, will use interest from the money to provide scholarships for students entering two-year technical training in perpetuity. 

Collins said it's too early to know exactly how much each school will receive because taxes and other fees have not yet been taken into account. 

"Five million was kind of our hoped goal, and we surpassed that just a little bit, so we were very happy," Collins said. He described the land as "good-to-excellent farm ground." 

Prior to the auction, the land was already providing financial help to Plymouth County students heading to tech schools -- each year the land was rented after the Perrys' deaths, a portion of the rent was directed to the school foundations. 

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