BOC to again review ways to fund repairs, upgrades at Kaliseum

By: 
Dennis Mansfield, Contributing Writer

KALKASKA – There might be nothing simple about a potential solution – or solutions – to fix and upgrade facilities at the Kaliseum Recreation Complex, after all.

The Kalkaska Board of Commissioners was again slated to discuss options on fixing the roof above the pool area, as well as another $4 million in repairs and mechanical upgrades, at a special meeting on Wednesday, Nov. 28.

Commissioners voted to close the pool area in early September after a “fastener,” reportedly a 5/8th-inch bolt, broke loose from the ceiling and fell to the floor below. According to officials, the part was large and heavy enough to have caused serious injury, if it had struck anyone.

The closure came at somewhat of an inopportune time, as commissioners have been working to find financial options to fund up to $4.2 million in improvements and upgrades to the Kaliseum which is nearing its 20th birthday. That would include replacement, improvements and upgrades to the building’s mechanical equipment, such as heating and cooling functions.

And, they’re trying to find a way to make sure that local taxpayers won’t have to pick up the bill. That might be possible by the county participating in a nationwide program that uses savings in utility and operational costs to pay back a low interest loan.

The loan program may fund needed mechanical upgrades. But, at the same time, commissioners are looking at the possibility of issuing up to $1 million in bonds to repair and reopen the pool area.

The board has already agreed to hire a bond attorney and recently published notices on the county’s intent to issue bonds.

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