Proposed Perham Area Community Center Fit-Up

The Perham Area Community Center is planning a renovation and addition to the current facility to keep up with the growth of the community and area. The PACC Fit-Up will address the responses from the community survey, including more workout space as well as additional programming and family activities.

What will change? 

The PACC is planning a “fit-up” to better utilize available space and add family activities. With new and improved access to areas of our facility, we have an opportunity to better arrange spaces and provide expanded services. The plan currently includes: 

  • an expansion for an indoor playland, party rooms, and restrooms
  • an expansion for child watch / concessions area
  • free weight room relocation to lower level
  • renovation of locker rooms
  • update pool equipment to a more efficient and cost-effective system
  • a climbing wall
  • office remodel and front desk relocation
  • air conditioning throughout the facility
  • outdoor gym space
  • bathrooms on the upper level
  • expanded lobby area for waiting or socializing
  • new equipment to align with fitness trends to accommodate all abilities
  • additional multi-use and private fitness spaces
  • a reskin of the exterior of the building for improved insulation.

What will the floor plans look like?

Here are potential floor plans that have been drafted. These are preliminary and not for construction. 

What will the kids playland look like?

We don’t have any renderings created yet, but here is an idea of what it could look like. 

What will the climbing wall look like?

Like the playland, we don’t have any official drawings created. We have done a little research, and these photos have us inspired!  

What will the exterior of the building look like after it is re-skinned? 

The current exterior of the building is hard to apply materials to, so our plan is to spray foam the entire exterior and then attach metal panels. This will improve the insulation value of the building drastically. These drawings show the updated front of the building, along with the expansion for child watch, concessions, and storage. 

Below are some common questions related to the project and the sales tax proposal:

Why does the PACC need improvements?

Like any business, the PACC has an operating budget based on services that are wanted and/or needed now and well into the future. The board conducted strategic planning in 2016 to address the future of the PACC including changes, improvements and cash flow. That strategic planning process resulted in a community survey and the proposed plan is a direct response to the survey results. Citizens requested more workout space, and additional programming and family activities. Secondly, our facility is showing its age and needs  mechanical and structural upkeep. Just like a house, the PACC needs repairs that occasionally exceed planned expenses. Finally, the PACC needs to add services that will help attract members, sustain operations and improve our community. The PACC will continually evaluate opportunities to add aquatics features, therapy services, fitness facilities and other offerings to deliver on our mission to build healthier lives in our community.

What is the estimated cost?

Hard Construction

Minor/Major remodel of current building, as well as 7,000 sq ft expansion.


Capital Repair / Replacement

Replace ceiling in aquatics area / update pool equipment / add air conditioning throughout the facility



Kids Playland, update exercise machines and equipment, Climbing wall


Soft Construction

10% of projects costs excluding new pool system and general equipment costs — architect / engineering fees, permits, insurance, etc.


Estimated Total Project Costs


Why use a sales tax to fund the improvements?

A sales tax would spread the cost of the improvements over a broader number of users who visit and shop in Perham. Alternatively, placing the cost of the improvements on property taxes would require only those who have property within city limits to contribute. Perham is a regional center that draws a variety of visitors to the community who also use the amenities that the PACC has to offer. By paying for the updates with a sales tax, these other users contribute to the overall cost of the building project. Currently several surrounding towns use local option sales tax measures to successfully fund community buildings and athletic facilities.

What items would be subject to the half percent sales tax?

The tax applies to all items subject to the State’s general sales tax. Similarly, the local option sales tax would NOT apply to groceries, clothing, prescriptions, vehicle sales, or other non-taxable items.

How will the half percent sales tax affect my purchases?


Current Cost

New Sales Tax

Medium Latte


2 cents

Lunch and Beverage


6 cents

Dinner for Two


25 cents

Floor Lamp


50 cents

Overnight Stay


60 cents

How long will the sales tax last?

The proposed sales tax will be in effect until $5.2 million is collected or for 20 years, whichever occurs first. The sales tax is limited to the payment of costs related to the construction of the PACC improvements and shall terminate when all such costs have been paid. If sales tax collections are similar to DOR projections, the improvements should be paid off in approximately 20 years.

How is the total project being funded?

In addition to the sales tax, total project costs of $5.6M will be funded using additional grants, fundraising dollars, and sponsorships.

Can the sales tax be used for any other project?

No. The ballot question is specific to the Perham Area Community Center. Per State Statute the physical address listed on the ballot is the only place the funds can be used.

How would the sales tax be collected?

The local option sales tax would be collected by the Minnesota Department of Revenue along with the State sales tax. The State would then remit the funds to the City. The City would pay a fee to the State for this service but this would minimize the administrative cost associated with the tax.

What is the process for approving a local option sales tax?

State Statute 297A.99 sets forth the process for adopting a local option sales tax. There are two key steps in the process which include: 1) approval by the voters of the City and 2) special legislation authorizing the tax by the Minnesota Legislature.

To approve the local option sales tax for the Perham Area Community Center, the election would be held at this year’s November 6th General Election.

When would construction begin on the facility?

If approved at the November 2018 election, the sales tax proposal would then go the Minnesota Legislature to receive special legislation authorizing the tax. If approved during the 2019 Legislative Session, construction would likely begin in the Fall of 2019.

What happens to the project if the vote fails?

Some of the main infrastructure needs may be reliant on property taxes from both the City and the Perham-Dent School District as part of the Tri-Board agreement with the PACC. Other parts of the proposal may or may not be accomplished by fundraising and/or donations.

Can I vote early?

Yes. Absentee ballots for the general election can be requested early. To vote early by mail, you need to go to the MN Secretary of State website and apply to have the ballot mailed to you. You can apply for a ballot any time before, but leave time for election officials to mail it and for you to return it. Ballots received after Election Day will not be counted.


Learn more and/or apply at the link below:

Where can I learn more or ask questions?

We want to be sure you have the resources and tools to make an educated decision. We have scheduled a number of open forum meetings that are open to the public. We encourage you to attend, as there will be plans and renderings available. We’ll also open it up for questions.


Join us on one of the following dates!

Wednesday, October 10 7am Lakes Cafe
Wednesday, October 10 6:30pm PACC
Thursday, October 11 9am Nest
Sunday, October 14 10:30am Lakes Cafe


Our website is also updated with information regarding the PACC Fit-Up. Visit it online here:

More Questions?

Give us a call at 218.346.7222 or shoot us an email at!



Perham Area Community Center
620 3rd Avenue SE Perham, MN 56573

© 2017 PACC.  Website by Arvig® Media.


Mon- Fri 5:30 am - 9 pm
Saturday 8 am - 4 pm
Sunday 12 noon - 4 pm


© 2017 PACC.  Website by Arvig® Media.

Call Aquatics Director Jill Shipman at 346-7222 for more information regarding this training opportunity!  Great way for teens to earn money and learn valuable skills!