Lutsen fire hall loan approved by county

At the Tuesday, May 8 county board meeting, Lutsen Fire Chief Paul Goettl requested a  loan from the county to help the county complete expansion and renovation of its fire hall.  “Lutsen has basically outgrown its fire hall,” he said.  More people are attending meetings than in the past, and larger fire hall and town hall meeting space is needed. 
The township plans to remove an old garage (which will be given to the Lutsen Trailblazers Snowmobile Club) and put up a new one in its place, attached to the current building. A new meeting room will allow about 180 people to be seated at tables.  A larger clerk’s office and an emergency services office space will provide more secure storage space as well.  The new garage will have six stalls instead of four, allowing all of the fire vehicles to be inside at once.
The estimated cost of the project is $577,000, and the township already has $227,000 in hand.  Goettl asked commissioners for a 20-year loan of $350,000 at 1 percent interest per county policy. 
Lutsen will soon be done paying off a previous county loan used to buy a fire vehicle; this has required payments of about $8,500 a year.  The township has been setting aside $10,000 a year for a new building for about the last 10 years, Goettl said.  These two amounts combined come close to the $19,395 a year that will be needed to pay the new loan to the county.
The board approved this loan unanimously as well.
The next Lutsen Town Meeting will be held at the town hall on Tuesday, May 15 at 7 p.m.