Could the county afford the debt?


Could the county afford the debt?

Advertiser-Tribune – Seneca County commissioners are right to reconsider plans to restore the 1884 courthouse due to expected revenue losses. Anyone who believes shelving those plans would be a knee-jerk reaction need only look to New Riegel for evidence to the contrary.

The village used a U.S. Department of Agriculture loan to install a sewer system. The decision wasn't imprudent; the system was required by environmental regulators. The design wasn't excessive; it was planned to accommodate a food-processing plant, the village's largest employer.

But after the sewerage was installed, owner Farmland Foods closed the plant, leaving a few hundred people living in or near the village to pay the bill.

Preemptively, Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, has asked the ag department?chief to work with New Riegel and other villages which face a similar scenario – before the locales fall into default on USDA-backed loans.

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