NextSite negotiates $65,000 buyout from city rather than continue to collect ‘success fees’

Stupasky sworn in

Kelly Stupasky, left, is sworn in as Quincy's treasurer by City Clerk Laura Oakman during Monday's Quincy City Council meeting. | David Adam

QUINCY — Rather than pay success fees to NextSite LLC for the next two years, the Quincy City Council voted Monday night to pay a one-time contract termination fee.

Aldermen on Dec. 5 tabled for one week a vote to pay a $15,000 success fee to NextSite, a commercial development advisory firm, for its role in bringing Planet Fitness to Quincy. The vote was tabled at the Dec. 18 meeting, and Alderman Mike Rein (R-5) asked if city officials could negotiate a “buyout” from the NextSite contract.

The city, under then-Mayor Kyle Moore, hired NextSite in February 2021 to market and recruit retailers and to secure commercial and/or hospitality developments in Quincy. The three-year contract paid NextSite $15,000 annually and entitled NextSite to “success fees” if a regional or national retail store, restaurant or commercial development that worked with NextSite opened for business in Quincy before Jan. 31, 2026. 

The success fees ranged from $4,500 to $30,000, based on the type of business or size of development. NextSite had provided the city information showing it could be eligible for approximately $115,000 to $120,000 in success fees before Jan. 31, 2026.

Aldermen voted 11-1 Monday to authorize a $65,000 buyout. Only Jeff Berman (R-2) voted against the resolution. Mike Farha (R-4) and Kelly Mays (R-3) were absent.

Tom Marx, owner of Marx Commercial Properties and Development Company, told Muddy River News he believed NextSite was taking credit for bringing Verizon Wireless and Planet Fitness to Quincy. He claims the company had “absolutely nothing whatsoever” to do with either of those two tenants coming to Quincy.

A Dec. 20 memo to aldermen from Chuck Bevelheimer, director of planning and development, detailed conversations he and Quincy Mayor Mike Troup recently had with NextSite CEO Chuck Branch. Troup said Branch suggested the possibility of a buyout one day before Rein brought it up during the City Council meeting.

“We didn’t react, because I didn’t know if that was a possibility or not,” Troup said after Monday’s meeting. 

During a second meeting with Branch, Troup said both sides went “back and forth.”

“(I told Branch) I’m not going to be able to get ($115,000 to $120,000) approved,” he said. “It was just good old negotiations.”

Troup said the original NextSite contract had several flaws.

“The problem (was) it didn’t define what the deliverables really were,” he said. “It’s pretty broad to say, ‘NextSite’s responsibilities are to tell potential retailers about Quincy.’ We didn’t define retailers. As an example, do you think we would target Planet Fitness with how much sales tax revenue are they going to generate? It’s not much. Now, you bring another Target? I’m all in. Not all retailers are the same, and I want to work with the big box stores.”

During the public forum at the beginning of the meeting, Aaron Coffman complained to aldermen about landlord Chris Bickhaus. Coffman claims Bickhaus is trying to rent a home at 1610 Ohio.

“I gave him $2,305 of my money, and he promised me a home,” Coffman said.

He said he is tired of tenants in Quincy “getting the focus put on us like we did something wrong,” though he provided no examples of that to aldermen. He said he filed a minimum housing complaint at City Hall, but he wasn’t satisfied with an investigation completed by a member of the Quincy Police Department.

“The city does need to do something about the housing situation besides building more houses,” Coffman said. “They need to hold these landlords more accountable. I don’t disagree with Mike Troup by saying, ‘Yeah, it’s already state law under the Landlord and Tenants Act.’ That’s the problem. My rights were violated.”

In other action, aldermen:

  • Thanked outgoing Alderman Brianna Rivera (R-3), who attended her last meeting on Monday. Rivera will start a new job as the executive director of The District next month.
  • Saw Kelly Stupasky be sworn in as the city treasurer. He replaces Linda Moore, who is resigning at the end of the year.
  • Approved the mayor’s appointment of Adam Yates, chief of the Quincy Police Department, to fill the remaining term expiring April 30, 2024, as the City of Quincy public safety official on the Joint 911 ETSB.
  • Approved an ordinance to rezone three parcels of land without addresses along Ellington Road between North 24th and North 36th from RU1 (rural/agricultural) to M1 (light industrial) to allow for the construction of a United Alloy facility.
  • Approved an ordinance vacating the public right of way at 4631 Harrison to allow for the front yard of the parcel to be square with Harrison and to align the street right of way with Harrison.
  • Approved an ordinance granting a variation from zoning regulations to allow for the construction of a garage at 921 Maple.

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