Logansport to refinance bonds, gives initial approval to allocating economic development funds

Last Updated on March 8, 2016 by cassnetwork

The Logansport City Council gave initial approval to a couple of ordinances related to economic development at their meeting last night.

One measure approved on first reading allocates $20,000 in CEDIT funds to local corporations and industries that hire summer interns or work through an affiliated cooperative program to hire college students throughout the year. The funds would allow $1000 per summer intern and $500 per semester for co-op students.

The council also was unanimous in their preliminary approval of an ordinance regarding  economic development efforts between the cty and the Cass Logansport Economic Development Organization (CLEDO).

The previous city administration had withdrawn from CLEDO and budgeted for a city economic development department, but current city and CLEDO officials cited a desire to coordinate economic development efforts. The ordinance approved on first reading last night makes the mayor, a city council member appointed by a majority of the city council and an LMU representative designated by the LMU superintendent full voting members of CLEDO’s board of directors. The ordinance calls for an annual allocation of not less than $75,000 from CEDIT funds for a year, to then renew year-to-year for two years.

CLEDO director Bill Cuppy and Mayor Dave Kitchell said Cass County continues to employ its own economic development director, Christy Householder, but said both the city, county and CLEDO have been actively working together on economic development efforts.

The council also approved a resolution earmarking $8,000 from the city’s economic development department budget to pay utility bills for the Cass County Historical Society.

Other items approved last night include a resolution approving a Utility Service Board resolution regarding payment of claims, as stipulated by the Indiana State Board of Accounts and an ordinance fixing salaries for the cemetery sexton and street commissioner.

The council also unanimously approved an ordinance that will allow them to refinance municipal bonds issued in 2007 for road improvements at Ivy Tech. Consultants say the city can save about $150,000 over the remaining term of 12 years. The city’s financial advisors said refinancing could help to lower the city’s tax rate. Former councilman Bob Bishop told the council that the previous administration had planned to pay off the remaining amount of more than $3 million in 2017.

The ordinances approved on first reading last night will require a second reading by the Logansport City Council.