CHAPMANVILLE - At the regular session of the Chapmanville Town Council on Monday, Fire Chief Tommy Perry approached the council for a second time about potentially approving a building loan to complete the upgrades to the town's fire department.
Perry first came forward with the idea last month during the council's April session. Perry said he has been in talks with Logan Bank & Trust for a construction loan that the fire department would pay interest on for the first 12 months. After the first 12 months, it would roll over into a fixed loan that the town would make payments on.
The loan, Perry said, would be $400,000 with a projected maximum interest rate of 6%, with payments at $2,867 per month for 20 years or $2,400 a month for 30 years.
He said the first 12-month period would give the town time to finish the loan it is currently paying for one of the fire trucks, which he added should be paid off toward the end of this summer. He proposed that if a building loan is approved, the town can continue paying the same amount as they are for the truck loan and the fire department will pay the remaining balance each month.
Under that plan, the loan would cost the town roughly $1,100 per month, which is already being paid on the truck.
Perry said he needs the council's permission to use the property the building is on as collateral.
The proposal was met with some skepticism from council members, who agreed that a special meeting on this issue should be held after the election and subsequent new office holders take their seats after July 1.
"I'd feel a lot more comfortable if we sat down and had a meeting strictly for the payment for this," said Councilman Tony Robison. "I feel uncomfortable on just what we've heard by doing it, and then we're coming up on the end of a term and we're throwing this on a new council possibly. To sit down and hash all this out and deal with this only is in our best interest."
"I think so, too, with the numbers in front of us and what's what," Councilwoman Robin Adams Mutters responded.
Robison then made a motion to table the proposal until a meeting can be held.
Perry was understanding of the decision.
"I want everything out in the open. I don't want anybody to have any bad taste where it can be thrown up later," he said. "This is a lot of money, but it's not money being thrown away."
The Chapmanville Fire Department began remodeling their facility, which was built in 1954, in the summer of 2017. Most of the work completed so far has been the result of the department members' own labor. The Logan County Commission allotted $70,000 toward the initial project.
Dylan Vidovich is a news reporter for HD Media. Contact him by phone at 304-896-5196 or follow him on Twitter @DVidovichLB.