As the Archbold Park Board has talked about moving forward with the construction of a new baseball diamond at Memorial Park, some are questioning the decision.
The board still owes almost $1.5 million on the construction of Woodland Park, on the south side of the village. Construction started in 2003.
Jennifer Kidder, director of Archbold Parks & Recreation, said building Woodland Park, which includes soccer fields, a playground with a large structure, basketball courts, an amphitheater, sledding hill, and a concession stand, cost $2.64 million.
The board gets its funding through a one quarter of one percent (.25%) share of the village income tax.
In 2007, 2008, and 2009, the Great Recession struck, and Park Board saw its share of the income tax dwindle, making for some very tight budgets.
Kidder said Park Board originally paid for the construction of Woodland Drive, the dead-end street that enters the park. Archbold Village Council later reimbursed Park Board for the cost of construction of the street, “as roads are paid for through the village capital projects fund.”
Kidder said Park Board fi- nanced the cost of the Woodland Park project with oneyear notes.
The village sold the notes to investors; then after one year, repaid the investors, with interest.
In 2010, she said the debt was converted into a regular bond issue with a regular payment schedule.
“This was done in conjunction with money that was borrowed for the update and expansion of the Archbold Wastewater Treatment Plant,” she said.
“Now that we have a regular payment schedule, we are paying approximately $140,000 in principal and interest each year.
“We make an interest payment in the first half of the year, and then in December, we make a principal and interest payment.”
Kidder said Park Board does not plan to build a second, four-diamond baseballsoftball facility all at once.
“We will be completing the project as money allows,” she said. “This means the project will take many years to complete, but it will be done and will be done without taking on any additional debt.
“We have put money aside in our capital project budget to be used towards the ball diamond project. It hasn’t been a huge amount, but it’s a start.”
“We will also aggressively pursue other funding sources for the completion of the project whether that be in the form of donations and/or grant money.”