July 11, 2022
WATERTOWN, S.D.–The Watertown City Council held a very brief special meeting today (Monday).
It lasted all of 15 minutes, with just one item on the agenda, but an important one at that.
The council, on a unanimous vote, agreed to borrow an additional $10 million to build a new two sheet ice arena that keeps getting more expensive. The latest estimates put the price tag at $33 to $34 million.
Not a single shovel of dirt has been turned on the project yet, although city officials say a groundbreaking will occur sometime in August.
Mayor Ried Holien has championed this project since taking office last year. Here’s what he had to say at today’s meeting….
The $10 million bond approved today will be paid off over 30 years, or perhaps sooner, with sales tax revenues. The mayor says, that means no tax increase….
The mayor says the money borrowed today can be looked at as a loan….
All told, the city has now committed to $30 million in bonding money to build the ice arena, plus they’ve pledged using another $5 million in cash reserves.
Holien said today that $8 million in private donations have been made toward construction, with more donations still coming in.