Silver Lake to try to re-finance library building loan

This Google Streetview photo shows the proposed new Community Library branch on Second Street in Silver Lake.

This Google Streetview photo shows the proposed new Community Library branch on Second Street in Silver Lake.

Silver Lake village President Bruce Nopenz said he is going to explore re-financing a loan the village is using to buy a building on Second Street intended to serve as a local branch for the Community Library system.

His goal, Nopenz said at the Village Board’s committee of the whole meeting Wednesday, would be to eliminate the balloon payment of  $200,000 due in 2018. In total, the village borrowed $250,000 at 3 percent interest for five years. The interest rate could be adjusted after that point. The village’s monthly payment now is $1,300 per month.

Originally, the village expected the other Community Library municipalities to contribute $50,000 each toward the project. But only Salem agreed to contribute that money and even that board has subsequently held up completing the contribution. The other Community Library municipalities are Paddock Lake, Twin Lakes and Randall.

The joint library cannot own real estate, but it can pay rent. The library also has a library building in Salem, for which Salem owns the property, and rents a building in Twin Lakes.

Wednesday, Nopenz said he would like to get the monthly payment to something that would be close to what the library would be willing to pay as rent and eliminate the balloon payment.

But if the loan cannot be re-financed or the village and the library cannot agree on a lease, then the village has to be prepared to put the building on the market, Nopenz said.

“If we can’t get the two parties together, we have to go to plan b,” Nopenz said.

Other board members seemed confident that some kind of lease agreement can be worked out with the library.

“I think the library will take it,” Trustee Roger Johnson said.

Trustees discussed how much they would like to get from the library for a monthly lease payment. Discussion centered around at least $1,300 to cover the village’s monthly payment.

But former village President Jeff Albrecht, speaking from the audience, said the board was not taking into account a number of costs associated with the building, even if it is just rented out, such as insurance, potential major repairs like a water well replacement and even the cost of lost revenue because the building is no longer on the tax rolls.

Instead of considering being landlords to the library, Albrecht said he favored the village selling the building.

“In my opinion, get rid of it,” Albrecht said, “… that number you are talking about is way low.”


  1. Bernard Punsley says:

    With all due respect to the Board, this building is a WHITE ELEPHANT! Mr. Albrecht is correct, even at $1300/rent, the village will still be “on the hook” for additional maintenance and upkeep fees. Major interior renovations still need to be done. The project monthly fee does not even “keep us even”. To those that say “well, we will own the building when the mortgage is paid off”, (in 20 years), I say SO WHAT! Take what we are losing in projected tax revenue per year, multiply that x 20 years, that’s LOST REVENUE(if we sold the building). Sell the building to a developer willing to invest in dividing up the interior, who then could lease that space to the library, as well as use the remaining space for other business interests. Library stays, investors gets monthly lease/rent monies coming in, Silver Lake gets the tax revenue, a Win-Win-Win situation. This building has been an albatross around the previous board’s necks, and will continue to be for our current board. SELL IT!

  2. Library Logistics says:

    The current Silver Lake Rescue Squad building is owned by the village, leased to the SLRS for $1/ annually. With some modification/renovation, space could be added on to the building to house the library. Sell the current vacant building, use minimal funding to expand. Rescue would remain on one side of the building, library on the other. You’ve solved your library dilemma. It has some possibilities. Rescue might be interested in such a benefit to the community as well as upgrading their building. Give it some thought!

  3. Library Lover says:

    I think “Library Logistics” may have an interesting concept her. The existing building used by the rescue department could easily be added onto to provide library space. We don’t need to build a castle here. Perhaps one of our local contracters could donate some labor to help us keep costs down. I am afraid the vacant building that we bought comes with too many strings attached. If we put the building back on the tax rolls, we have a yearly tax payment coming in. Perhaps a portion of that could help fund the library. The current ambulance building is a perfect location, lots of parking available, etc. Let’s explore the idea a little bit more before we dump any more taxpayer money into the vacant building.

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