Refinancing plan set for former Arlies’ building

Staff writer

Marion City Council approved a refinancing plan for 828 N. Roosevelt St., formerly Arlie’s Paint, Body, and Glass.

The council chose the lease/purchase plan from Central National Bank on a 20-year amortization and an interest rate of 3.25 percent. The origination fees will be $3,000. The monthly payment on the project would be $1,339.

“The 20-year is exactly what we’re paying on a monthly basis,” city administrator Doug Kjellin said.

That statement is ironic considering Kjellin told the council in the previous meeting that a refinancing plan was what the city should pursue because interest rates were so low. Kjellin also, briefly, recommended choosing the 15-year amortization schedule, with a monthly payment of $1,658 per month, before stating that the city’s best interest is keeping the monthly cost at a minimum.

About a month ago, Kjellin recommended that the council buy the building outright, saying it would give the city the most options when recruiting a buyer or tenant.

He also heartedly bashed the idea of setting up a 1-to-1 payment agreement with a tenant, where the city and tenant pay the same amount toward the mortgage. That was the setup for Arlies’. On Monday, Kjellin recommended the 20-year amortization because it would make such a setup easier.

The city also had a bid from Tampa State Bank with an interest rate of 4.24 percent. The advantage of that plan was origination fees of $1,770.

“This would be a very easy decision if we had a date to sell,” Kjellin said.

Neither the council nor Kjellin expressed any confidence that building would be sold anytime soon.

Marion National Bank did not make a bid.

Both plans have no prepayment penalties if the city finds a buyer and can pay off the principal, more than $230,000.

Central National Bank president Todd Heitschmidt is a member of Marion City Council. He abstained from voting on this item.

Library

Margo Yates, who spoke on behalf of the Marion Planning Commission, recommended a conditional use permit for the Marion library extension.

She said the planning commission recommended changing the plan to include a paved parking lot with additional dusk to dawn lights. She said it is against zoning regulations to have gravel parking lots within the city limits. Council member Jerry Dieter pointed out that the Marion Senior Center and Our Savior Lutheran Church parking lots are both gravel.

“We can’t approve the gravel parking lot,” Yates said. “But you can. We won’t rubber stamp the parking lot.”

With lights added, the council approved the plan with the gravel parking lot.

Librarian Janet Marler stated of a paved parking lot: “That’s an additional cost we’d rather put into the building.”

Heitschmidt brought up the possibility that the city could pave the parking lot with excess materials when the Fourth and Williams Street project was completed.

“We make no promises,” Kjellin added.

The council also approved waiving the building permit, water, and sewer tap fees for the project. The water and sewer fees were $300 and $400 respectively. Because the library is a city building, the city would be in charge of maintenance. The construction project is paid with donations.

“Why should we charge ourselves?” Heitschmidt said.

Alley

The council decided the next alley the city will repave would be the alley between Third and Fourth Street behind Bearly Making It Antiques and Marion National Bank.

Kjellin said the city would get bids for the alley and conduct research of the best place to find funds for the project.

The 100 block of Third Street entrance is bad enough that city dump trucks cannot negotiate it. City crews prefer to drive up the fourth street entrance and back up along the alley.

“I consider is a safety issue to have unnecessary backing of a large vehicle,” Kjellin said.

In other business:

  • Mary Olson moved the malt beverage license for the Chingawassa Days committee onto the regular agenda from the consent agenda. She said people in the community had objected to beer being sold at a family event. She then made the motion to approve the license and it was approved unanimously.
  • The council approved fees for the Marion baseball complex. For groups outside of USD 408, a lined field with lights will cost $60 per day, a lined field without lights will cost $50 per day, an unlined field with lights will cost $25 per day, and an unlined field without lights will cost $15 per day. For local organizations working with the recreation commission, a dressed field with lights costs $35 and a dressed field without costs $25. The fees are meant to cover the costs of a city worker lining the field.
  • The city approved $12,000 in engineering costs of Evans Bierly, Hutchison, and Associates for work on the KLINK and Jex Addition projects.
  • The city approved 25 city employees will receive Chingawassa Days buttons as a benefit. The buttons cost $23 apiece.
  • The Marion Police Department added ballistic panels from acquired free from the old Marion County Jail to their office. “It’s a low cost way to add additional security to the police department,” Kjellin said.

 

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