Courthouse funding obtained

SANDPOINT — Bonner County commissioners issued a promissory note Tuesday for what’s hoped to be the last slug of financing needed to complete the overhaul of the courthouse.

The note enables a $600,000 loan from Mountain West Bank. The note matures in 10 years, bears an annual interest rate of 2.85 percent and can be paid off early without penalty.

The Idaho Constitution bars counties from incurring indebtedness beyond a single fiscal year, although the county argued the courthouse work was exempt from the prohibition because the facility was a necessary and ordinary expense.

First District Judge Benjamin Simpson agreed during judicial confirmation proceedings last year.

The county initially planned on capping the loan at $400,000, but subsequently elevated the sum to $600,000 in order to improve the building’s surveillance system, soundproofing and customer service desks.

The change orders were requested after courts and clerks staff did a walk-through of the building to make sure it suited their needs.

Nielsen the project’s last change order amounted to $179,000.

“I don’t want to take any more than we need, but I want to make sure that we’ve got enough,” said Commissioner Mike Nielsen, the board’s project liaison.

A subsequent loan request would add significant administrative costs, Nielsen said.

The remodel odyssey began about 19 months ago, when the county began a phased approach to the overhaul. But concerns about asbestos in the building forced the county to collapse the phases into a single project that cost more than $6 million and scattered court staff across several locations during construction.

Although there have been numerous projected reopening dates, Nielsen remains confident there is light at the end of the courthouse tunnel.

“And it’s not a train,” he said.

The project is tracking toward a June 19 reopening date.

Read More News

Asian shares hit by gloom on Wall Street, lower oil prices


October 25, 2016 at 9:25 pm | Shares are broadly lower in Asia on Wednesday after a gloomy session on Wall Street, as weaker oil prices also took a toll

Read More

Haunted mill? Unseen prankster keeps things lively

October 25, 2016 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press CATALDO — Brad Corkill and Terry Groth leaned against Corkill's pickup while they chatted for a little while at the end of a work day in September.The mill was shut down, the workers...

Read More

New arena is planned at University of Idaho

October 25, 2016 at 5:00 am | Coeur d'Alene Press The University of Idaho unveiled plans Friday to construct the Idaho Arena, a 4,700-seat, 70,000-square-foot, $30 million athletics facility that will be home for the Vandal men’s and women’s...

Read More

SAR food drive nets donations

October 25, 2016 at 5:00 am | Bonner County Daily Bee

Read More