City weighing options for pool funding

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Officials with the City of Mobridge are exploring a number of options that would help to fund a new aquatics center.

The city is currently looking into opting out of the tax freeze and issuing bonds for the $2.5 million cost of the project.

According to Mobridge City Administrator Steve Gasser, it is a good time to issue project bonds.

“Right now it sounds like it is a great time of do this because the interest rate is at 3 percent,” he said. “There are people out there who are looking to purchase these construction bonds.”

Gasser said city officials are diligently working on options that would drop the annual payments andthe tax burden on city residents, if the council approves the bond issue.

“The pool committee is currently and will continue to work on getting donations and pledges that will help to lower the cost of the payment,” he said. “We are also looking at ways to increase the city’s annual contribution to the pool fund. Using a portion of the 3B money is being considered as part of the city’s contribution.”

Mayor Jamie Dietterle said many scenarios are being considered at this time.

“We are looking at some possible options for extra funding from the city with the possibility of holding off on some projects we had planned for to put that money toward the pool to help bring down the levy,” he said.  “Steve has some good figures on this but we are not sure if this is what we will be doing, just a few ideas we are putting out there.”

Dietterle said the 2013 planned budget from the Mobridge Chamber of Commerce reports the actual funding received through 3B taxes.

“Our 3B money helps us to promote and advertise for our city, which in return helps attract people to our community and to places like our new aquatic center,” he said. “Taking away a great portion of that money that we use for the good of our community would be the wrong avenue to approach. I would not recommend that we go this way.”

He said using a smaller amount of the 3B money over a 10-year period toward the project rather than a suggested $50,000, would be a more desirable solution for all concerned.

Gasser said he is working with the mayor and the city council to research and gather numbers to present to the council at the Monday, Jan. 7, meeting. Tobin Morris will also be at the meeting to explain the bond issue and the best option for the city at this time.

The meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. at city hall.

– Katie Zerr –

 
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