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City Commissioners received some very good financial news at its December 10 meeting when staff reported on the results of refinancing nine year old water and sewer revenue bonds.
Plans to refinance the Series 2003 Water and Sewer Revenue Bonds and borrowing an additional $4 million was presented to the commission and the public during the budget hearings held in September. The new funds are dedicated to improving water quality throughout the city with priority being given to those areas experiencing discolored water, or “red water,” resulting from the city’s aging distribution infrastructure.
So while refinancing was planned, it was the perfect timing that yielded much better than expected results. Extending the term by two years combined with the historically low interest rates, the city realized an additional savings over the life of the bond in excess of $1,672,000 substantially increasing funds to combat “red water,” with the annual debt service payments remaining approximately the same
Mark Litzinger, the city’s comptroller, attributes the refinancing success to a number of factors including the city’s strong bond rating, the historically low municipal borrowing rates, and the guidance by the city’s financial advisors.
“We are constantly working to protect the city’s continually strong financial standing through careful planning, conservative budgeting, and constant monitoring the economic market,” said Litzinger. “Add to that a good financial planning team that understand the market that advises when to act, and the results are positive all around. Without a doubt, the timing was right.”
Public Works Director Martha Graham began meeting with her staff this week to plan an accelerated schedule of projects aimed at the eradication of “red water” wherever its occurs. To learn more about "red Water" read High priority given to upgrading infrastructure and adopting new procedures to eliminate red water.
Mark Litzinger, with Mitch Owens of RBC Capital Markets, the city’s financial advisor, briefed Commissioners on the recent refinancing during the December 10 meeting.