SP sewer district helps move city hall

Published 10:43 am Friday, December 5, 2014

2.25 percent for 5 years; first payment will be $75,638.95

SOUTH POINT— South Point will have a new building to call city hall come the middle of next year.

The Quality Care Nursing Services Inc. building on Solida Road will serve as the new city hall. Quality Care moved to the old South Point Elementary School two years ago this month.

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Talks about a move began in early November as South Point Mayor Ron West began bargaining on the building Nov. 5. A unanimous decision was made this past Tuesday at a council meeting to make the move.

The South Point sewer district will issue a bond for $460,000 that will be purchased by Lawrence County through its Neighborhood Investment Program, a program that was started three years ago by County Treasurer Stephen Burcham.

“We will purchase the bond and they will turn it around and purchase the building,” Burcham said.

The program allows the purchase of bonds from other governmental entities at an interest rate less than what they could get from the bank but more than what banks offer on certificates of deposit. The terms are 2.25 percent for five years. Five years is the maximum length of time that Burcham can finance.

However, the village is financing over seven years, meaning the last payment will be a balloon payment. The payments with interest will be $75,638.95 for 2015; $74,610.02 for 2016; $73,107.15; $71,628.58 and $201,578.55 for the last payment in 2019.

“Personally, I’m happy that we could purchase the building to use as our new village offices,” Mary Cogan, South Point council member, said. “I hate the timing of the purchase because of the recent passing of the levy, but we can’t control everything.”

The South Point Sewer District fund is the only place that the money is coming from for the purchase of the building.

“The Ohio Revised Code does not allow money to be transferred from one fund to another,” West said. “Money from the general fund and funding from the passing of the police levy are not involved in this purchase.”

Basically, the sewer district is going to rent the building to the village of South Point to house offices. The rent price is not yet known because all of the departments that will be moving there have not yet been determined. It will, however, be at a fair market rate, Cogan said.

“Investment wise, I think it’s a great investment,” West said. “The building was purchased at a bargain price.”

One of the biggest reasons that the sewer district was able to make this happen was because of money that has been saved over time.

“A lot of places use their money for expenses and things like that. We have a very talented work group and village employees that do many things themselves, which enables us to do a lot of our own work,” Cogan said. “They can do a lot with very little money and make the best of their resources. Our administrators have done a great job being frugal as well. I’m very proud that we are financially sound enough to be able to do this.”

The location of the new building is one of the things the South Point government really liked about it.

“It is in the central part of the village, which makes it more accessible for the people of South Point,” West said. “Because of where we are at now, people won’t have to look at the sewer treatment plant when they come in anymore either.”

South Point’s current city hall is part of the sewer treatment plant.

“Our building now is much older and the new building is updated,” Cogan said. “This is just another thing to make South Point a better place to be.”