Events Center Plan On Hold

Sheldon, Iowa — The Sheldon City Council has delayed approval of the latest plan for the proposed events center until they can get an estimate of its operational cost.
Council Chambers
At their Wednesday meeting, Mike Bell of RDG Planning and Design reviewed the development of the plans for the center as well as a cost estimate for the project. He told the council that he considers this as a time to pause, review the plans and take a look at financing possibilities. Bell said his firm does not develop cost estimates, but turn that task over to another company that specializes in this type of work. The total estimate adds up to $5,320,926.00. This includes the construction cost, equipment, furnishings and contingencies.

City manager Scott Wynja told the council that since the swimming pool note had been paid off early, general obligation bonds could be used for the financing without an increase in taxes. This also would be well within the City’s legal bonding limit. However he explained that the council should keep in mind that they have several other major projects coming up in the next few years such as the additional water tower. Bell and the council also discussed other funding, which could be available including several state programs such as Vision Iowa. It was brought out that Sheldon might have a better chance of getting some of these grants if the project also included other amenities in the new park. Wyjna advised that the park board has been working on features they would like to see in the park.

Council member Ron Rensink remarked, “We can handle the cost”, but he says they need a little more time to get an idea of the operating costs and who would operate it. His motion to hire a firm at a cost of no more than twenty-five thousand dollars to develop a projection of operating costs was approved by the council. It is hoped that this report will be available for the second council meeting in September.

In other business the council approved the sale of two lots in the Sunshine Addition for one dollar each. One lot was bought by Dennis and Janet Potter, the other by Matt Hartog. Both lots were purchased under the terms set by the council for the sale of these lots. There are three more lots available that qualify for this sale arrangement. Anyone interested should contact the city office.

Public works director Todd Uhl reported to the council that the street improvement project is well underway and the Runger Division infrastructure project will start soon. In other comments, council member Brad Hindt brought up the futility of sprinkler watering during the day since much of that water evaporates. Such watering should only be done in the evening or early morning.

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