East Moline aldermen changed course Wednesday night and voted 6-1 to approve a $10.2 million line of credit for infrastructure work on Phase II of The Bend.
An $8 million line of credit for the project, which is being developed at the former Case IH site, was approved at the council's April 2 meeting. But Mike VanDeHeede of Great River Property Development LLC, indicated then that the $8 million was inadequate to complete the work.
VanDeHeede was present Wednesday to answer the council’s questions, along with Larry Anderson, another investor/developer in the project. VanDeHeede said that since the last meeting, several council members had visited the work site in order to better understand the issues involved.
Alderman Gary Almblade said his opinion had not changed since the April 2 meeting and that he believed a third party should be engaged to “realistically review” the numbers.
Alderwoman Nancy Mulcahey echoed her concerns from the April 2 meeting, saying she wants the project to be successful, but is concerned about the city’s financial exposure.
In addition to answering the council’s questions, VanDeHeede emphasized that loans for the project have all been pre-approved by the various financial institutions involved pending the city’s approval of the line of credit and that the project is ahead of schedule. He also reminded the council that upon completion of the project the city “gets paid first,” which is an incentive to “make it happen quicker, faster, and stronger.”
The motion passed 6-1 with Mulcahey casting the dissenting vote.
In other business, the council approved entering into a temporary contract with Bohnsack & Frommelt, LLC to provide audit and other accounting services to the city until a replacement is hired for finance director Megan Peterson, who has taken a job with Scott County.