City of Westfield considers $6M loan repayment resolution


City leaders in Westfield are considering a resolution that lays out the repayment terms of a $6 million loan made in 2014 for Grand Park.

The Westfield City Council is expected to vote on the resolution during its Sept. 12 meeting that would mean the loan would be repaid in full by the end of 2023. Council members had approved a resolution in 2014 that loaned $6 million of utility sale proceeds to the city for use within Grand Park, which is owned by the Westfield Redevelopment Commission.

The original agreement did not specify a repayment structure for that loan for the complex. Council members had previously proposed $500,000 annual loan payments, but the resolution before the council during its Aug. 22 meeting stipulated that $3 million would be paid on or before Dec. 1, while the remainder would be paid on or before Dec. 1, 2023.

However, the council decided to move up the first installment to be paid by Jan. 1. That was done so the council wouldn’t have to make a special appropriation on Dec. 1, said City Councilman Mike Johns.

Johns said the goal is to have the loan paid in full by the end of next year. The resolution is the latest step related to matters tied to Grand Park as the city is looking to possibly sell the complex or enter into a public-private partnership to operate it.

The 400-acre complex, which serves as the training camp for the Indianapolis Colts, has 31 soccer fields, 26 baseball diamonds, two administration buildings, seven concession stands and a 378,000-square-foot multi-use event center. Chris Proffitt, spokesman for the city, said earlier this month that the city had received seven bids for the complex, although the identities haven’t been made public.

The city is holding off disclosing the identities of the proposers until a bid review committee convenes, according to Proffitt.

The committee made up of five appointments by Mayor Andy Cook includes a Westfield City Council nominee and will be tasked with reviewing bids. The panel will make a recommendation to the Westfield Redevelopment Commission and Westfield City Council regarding Grand Park..

Both entities will eventually vote on either a buyer or operator of Grand Park or choose not to sell the campus, which has a minimum price of $85 million based on the average of two appraisals the city has already received.

If Westfield were to sell Grand Park, city officials previously said they would use the proceeds to pay off park debt. The city still owes nearly $80 million for the complex.

Jeremy Lollar, who serves as the city’s chief of staff, told the Westfield Redevelopment Commission during its Aug. 18 meeting that a recommendation isn’t expected anytime soon.

“We’re months away from any recommendation to this body,” Lollar said.