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Fairgrounds building cost to come from special building fund

Front elevation of the proposed new fairgrounds building.
Front elevation of the proposed new fairgrounds building.
It won’t be a bond issue.
Instead, the new agriculture and activity building at the Boone County Fairgrounds will be financed through a special building fund levy by the County Agricultural Society.
County commissioners made that decision in a discussion with the building planning committee members during their regular meeting Monday, Dec. 11.
With the Ag Society (fair board) paying for the building, it will be up to that board to negotiate loan terms and interest rate, and to determine the length of time for repayment.
Some $2.95 million in building cost would still be paid for through property tax receipts, but it would be owned and administered by the Ag Society.
A primary reason for not using a bond issue for financing is that alcoholic beverages could not be served at events held in the building if it was county-owned. Costs for a special bond election were also a factor.
Commissioners said they could foresee a number of events, including rodeos, concerts and other entertainment, where alcoholic beverage sales would generate a substantial portion of receipts if allowed.
The county will still be a participant in the project, because plans call for the Extension offices to be located in the building’s north section. Initial discussions were held on a lease agreement with the county to cover a portion of utility costs.
Commissioners approved a motion to consider a resolution at their Dec. 18 meeting, which would allow the Ag Society to pay for the planned building through the special building levy.
Commissioners also suggested the Ag Society should be considering formation of a building committee and a management committee, as well as by-laws and guidelines for its operation.