Mirfield Town Council has refused to sign a ‘one-sided’ lease agreement to take over Mirfield toilets.
Councillors said the Kirklees Council document would impose too many conditions and could ‘suck all the money away’.
They had wanted to take on the conveniences for a year and trial ways of keeping them open, but the lease agreement stated that the toilets must be kept free. Coun Vivien Lees-Hamilton said: “This town council cannot buy into a money pit.”
Councillors at its meeting on Tuesday agreed to go back to Kirklees to renegotiate.
Meanwhile, representatives of Gilder Hall also gave a presentation to the council, but said they are unable to apply for grants for the £2.5m project until planning permission is received. The decision will be made on August 23.
Trustee Lisa Newby said the group were in ‘a chicken and egg situation’ with regards to funding.
She described how they had spent around £80,000 – most of the trust’s cash – on reports to get the project off the ground.
Coun Kath Taylor said people would want to know when the project was going to start and where the money was going to come from.
Coun James Taylor added: “The last thing anybody around this table wants is it to be lost like it has been previously.”
Trustee Geoff Walls said: “The largest problem is the capital expenditure required to get the building up.”
But he added: “For 12 years we have had the dream of delivering on Gilder Hall. I can only give you our tenacity and determination.”