Archbold, OH

Council Refinances $5.35 Million Debt

Archbold Village Council approved refinancing $5.35 million of debt, and discussed using capital improvement funds to pay down Park Board debt Monday night, May 5.

Park board will pay down $50,000 of debt when its current $2.5 million in notes are refinanced. The debt will decrease to $2,450,000.

The board incurred the debt during the development of Woodland Park.

Brad Grime, councilman, asked if park board was planning to pay off more than $50,000 next year.

Kevin Morton, councilman and council’s park board liaison, said the board will be “looking at several payoff scenarios. Our full assumption is we will at least pay off what we paid this year.”

Morton said park board has no future major projects planned.

“We are in a position to concentrate on the debt,” he said.

He said Jennifer Kidder, parks and recreation director, is looking at ways to cut expenses.

Grime said he is concerned that at $50,000 a year, it will be hard for the board to pay off its debt in a respectable time.

Morton said he would forward park board meeting minutes, with the payoff scenarios, to council.

Capital Projects Money?

Grime asked about using capital funds to pay off park board debt.

Currently, the village collects a 1.5% tax on income from people who work in Archbold or live in the village, and on corporate profits.

Of that 1.5%, 1.25% goes to capital projects, such as streets and storm sewers, while .25% goes to the park board.

Jim Wyse, Archbold mayor, said he had suggested the idea of using money from the capital projects tax collection to help park board pay down debt.

Dennis Howell, Archbold village administrator, said nothing in the village charter or state law would prohibit the move. In fact, if park board couldn’t make the debt payment, the village would be forced to come up with the money from some source- such as the capital projects account.

Grime said he could be very opposed to using capital projects money to pay park debt.

Wyse said village officials are expecting revenue to decrease in the next few months, and was trying to think of creative ways to deal with the park debt problem.

Wyse said in Woodland Park, the park board had paid for a lot of infrastructure, such as underground utilities, streets, and parking lots.

Outside of the parks, the improvements are funded by capital projects, he said.

“I’m not saying we’d do it,” Wyse said, saying he was just looking for ways to “get creative” in financial issues.

Wastewater Plant

Council refinanced $2.9 million in debt for the expansion of the village wastewater treatment plant.

Council will pay $1 million in debt from the project, with the money coming from plant operations.

There was one bidder for the notes: Farmers & Merchants State Bank, Archbold.

F&M presented council two options: one-year notes at 2.95% interest, or three years at 3.55%.

Ed Leininger, councilman and F&M bank official, said the finance committee recommended council vote to go with the one-year option, at the lowest interest rate.

If council selected the threeyear option, it would cost the village an additional $62,000 in the first year.

Dennis Howell said given the current state of the economy, it is not anticipated rates will rise sharply, and if they do, the notes can be paid off early without penalty. The debt could then be refinanced, for a longer time.

Council voted for the oneyear option for the park and wastewater plant notes.- David Pugh

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