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Joint board forgives $7.1 million loan

A joint meeting of the LaGrange County Council and LaGrange County Commissioners resulted in the forgiveness of a $6.5 million loan granted a number of years ago for infrastructure improvements at Fawn River Crossing. Other amounts have been advanced over the years, bringing the total currently outstanding to $7,099,353.49.

The loans were made to the LaGrange County Redevelopment Commission from the Major Moves account. This account was established when LaGrange County received $40 million from the State of Indiana when the Indiana Toll Road was leased out some eight years ago. The money was designated for economic development infrastructure purposes.

A motion by Commissioner Larry Miller to forgive the loan, seconded by council member Charles Ashcraft, passed unanimously. A second motion by council member Ben Taylor to seek a voluntary payback to the county of 20 percent of collected tax incremental financing (TIF) dollars also passed unanimously.

This action occurred during a meeting to discuss the water line extension from the south side of Fawn River to the Multi-Plex complex on the east side of SR 9 approximately one mile south of the river. It was noted that contracts for the project need to be in place by the end of the year. Commission President Jac Price said that the schedule calls for the awarding of bids at the commissioners meeting on December 16.

An inter-local agreement was signed at the meeting wherein LaGrange County will build the water line to Multi-Plex and then turn the line over to the LaGrange County Regional Utility District to maintain and operate. The agreement also calls for the implementation fee for this project to be waived as well as the fees for future projects.

In conjunction with this project is the need for a common construction wage committee to meet. Price appointed Larry Miller as the commissioner representative, Charles Ashcraft as the project owner representative, William Connelly as the taxpayer representative, and Phil Curtis as an alternate.

A date for the common construction wage meeting has not been set.