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February 21, 2013

Bond resolutions for aquatic center, paving to get vote

Measure calling for the reopening of the K and I Bridge also on council agenda

NEW ALBANY — The New Albany City Council is slated to take the preliminary steps to issue bonds for $5.7 million for paving as well as $16 million for recreational projects this evening. 

On the agenda are two resolutions that lay the framework for the Mayor Jeff Gahan-backed proposals. 

The first resolution establishes a lease agreement between the New Albany Redevelopment Authority and the New Albany Redevelopment Commission. It would allow the redevelopment authority to foot a bond for an aquatic center, multiuse recreational facility and new soccer fields with tax-increment financing revenue and lease the properties to the commission. 

Tom Pittman, a city-hired attorney with the financial firm Barnes & Thornburg, said during a Tuesday work session the lease agreement would allow the commission to take on the projects without threatening the body’s debt limit. 

A public hearing will be held next month regarding the TIF bond if the council approves the measure. Since the redevelopment commission oversees the city’s seven TIF districts, it is considered the primary authority on the bond instead of the city council. 

The second resolution on tonight’s docket would establish a preliminary determination for the city to issue an Economic Development Income Tax bond worth up to $5.7 million for the purpose of paving. The administration presented its plans for the paving and recreational efforts during the Tuesday work session, and Economic Development and Redevelopment Director David Duggins said he expects the discussion to continue this evening. 

“We gave them a lot of information [Tuesday], and we went through a lot of details and I expect a good dialogue to follow up on some questions after they digest the information we gave them,” he said Wednesday. 

An important change in the recreational proposal now has the former Hoosier Panel property off Silver Street being used as a multipurpose facility instead of a baseball park. The New Albany Little League is pursuing its own park off Charlestown Road, so instead of just being a baseball complex, the Hoosier Panel site could include an indoor facility as well as field turf spaces that can be used for a variety of sports. 

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