Barrett said his initial meeting with the city's banking representative yielded three potential payment options, each within a $3,500- to $6,000 per-month range. While it could take as many as 20 years to pay for the property depending on which plan the city may opt with, Barrett said he's confident it could be paid for in 10 years.
"If I didn't think we could still be using the building in 40 years, I wouldn't suggest it," he said. "The one we're in right now is almost 80 years old."
Most of the city's funding comes from its business and occupation taxes, which are drawn from every business operating in Winfield. The city has a sizable B&O fund, Barrett said, but probably wouldn't use just that to pay for the building.
According to Chapman, many new council members and citizens have voiced concerns that the city's sewer projects will be affected by the purchase of a new building -- something she said is impossible.
"What a lot of people don't realize is our sewer fund is audited by the state and we have to apply by their laws, and they require a general fund -- that's your B&O revenue and everything else -- but the sewer fund is stand-alone," Chapman said. "The general fund cannot give money to the sewer fund ... that's totally prohibited."
Chapman said the city now has about $600,000 in B&O savings, and roughly $1 million in its general fund. Any purchase and payment plan the city may agree to could be covered in the fund without impacting normal operations, according to Chapman.
The new building, which was previously home to PJ's Daycare, has more space than the city had planned for when it considered constructing a new city hall, Chapman said.
"I'm in this town hall every day, I've been here for seven years now, and this building is so old -- if we have to move desks, or if we try to do anything with the electricity, it's a problem. I'm a little afraid of the electrical setup in this building, it's so old," she said. "There's no insulation, it's hard to heat and hard to cool; the walls are cracking, we've had plaster fall down; on top of that, it's so small we have no meeting room, just the conference room in the back we use for council chambers."
Winfield City Council will meet at 5:30 p.m., Sept. 24 to discuss the options for purchasing the building. For more information, including minutes and agendas from previous meetings, visit www.cityofwinfield.net.
Reach Lydia Nuzum at lydia.nu...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5189.