WELTON — The Welton City Council in a special meeting Thursday approved an interim loan and disbursement agreement between the city and the Iowa Finance Authority for $85,000.

The Water Revenue Capital Loan Notes Anticipation Project Note is part of state revolving loan funds through the Department of Natural Resources. The city’s bond attorneys, Ahlers and Cooney of Des Moines, assisted in its preparation.

The no-interest loan is intended to cover fees for planning and engineering services required for Welton’s $895,000 new water system scheduled for completion in 2007. This is the first time the DNR has given this kind of loan, City Clerk LeeAnn McCallister stated. The loan will be paid from water revenues and payment will not start until 2009.

The council also discussed disposition of Welton Elementary School closed by the Central Community School District as of this school year. The district proposes to demolish the entire building except the gym, but seven issues for clarification were cited in a letter from Central Superintendent Carol Hansen.

Councilman Ken Mickey asked why the cafeteria and kindergarten classrooms adjacent to the gym were being demolished and was told it would cost less to do this because the gym had been added as a free-standing building.

On questions of water hook-up to the new city water system, the council noted that any backhoe work had to be done by a licensed and bonded operator.

Since the city is not certain where the new water lines will be situated, no work can be done in advance. Copper piping will be used for the system.

Hansen asked the city to provide free water and sewer for the building, but the council agreed it was not legal to do this because state loans do not allow it. However, the water rates will be based on usage, which will be cheaper than the flat rate previously charged by the city.

The council decided to again ask the Central board to keep the art building, which is separate from the main building. The district has indicated it would prefer to demolish it with the main building and removal of asbestos. It can be used for storage and bathroom facilities and the furnace is intact.

Councilman Glen Boswell said though it isn’t a perfect building, it is probably the best building the city owns. He asked to keep the art building if at all possible.

Mickey noted he has had inquiries about what would happen to the wood flooring. Citizens are directed to contact the school district concerning salvaging anything in the building.