Northern News Services
Council has decided to withdraw money from various funds to completely pay off the total of $1.357 million it owes on four debentures.
Three of these debentures, which are bond-type debt instruments often used by municipalities to raise capital for infrastructure projects, pertain to the Midnight Sun Recreation Complex. The other debenture is for the Ptarmigan Hill subdivision.
The town is only making 2.5 per cent interest on its short-term investments. By paying off the debentures the town will save about $426,518. Coun. Denny Rodgers, chair of the administration committee, said it makes sense to pay off the loans, which are charging a higher interest rate than what the town is making off its investments.
This will be the first time in several years the town is debt-free.
During the debate to pay off the debentures, discussion broke out among council about the future of the town's Monday night bingos, and their revenues.
These revenues, as well as some monies made by the town from bingo licensing, goes into a recreation reserve fund. In turn, the town dips into this fund to pay down the loans on the recreation complex.
It was suggested at council that the town should cease its Monday night bingos, now that the recreation complex is about to be paid off. Council decided to maintain the status quo until the licence expires in April, at which time they will examine the issue again.