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School district saves $508,000 by refunding bonds
Sept. 1, 2017

BY GABE LICHT
Editor

DELANO, MN – Delano School Board directors learned Monday that the district would save even more than anticipated by refunding facility bonds from 2008.

“Today was a good day to sell bonds,” Ehler’s senior municipal advisor and vice president Greg Olsen told the board during its work session.

Ehler’s had estimated the district would save $431,000, but the actual savings will be $508,000.

The district received 10 bids for the bonds, compared to the five or six that were expected.

FTN Financial Capital Markets, of Memphis, TN, submitted the lowest bid, with an interest rate of 1.74 percent.

The highest bid had an interest rate of 1.97 percent, which was still lower than the projected interest rate of 2.09 percent, and less than half of the district’s previous interest rates, which ranged from 4 to 4.625 percent.

“Part of that has to do with you having a very high credit rating: AA3,” Olsen said. “It’s hard to get that rating.”

The lower interest rate will result in 11.5 percent savings over 10 years.

“Instead of paying $291,400, we’ll pay $246,000 per year,” Superintendent Matt Schoen said. “Is there any way to pay the same amount and pay it off sooner?”

“At this point, it’s too late,” Olsen said. “Had we talked about it sooner, we could have. All in all, I’d say this is very successful savings and a good thing for your taxpayers.”

Odds and ends
In other business, the board:

• approved a resolution for membership in the Minnesota State High School League for the 2017-18 school year.

• approved personnel matters, including the resignation of Delano Middle School math teacher Amanda Roff and the promotion of Martin Lira Landa from full time custodian to lead custodian, replacing Marty Kittok effective July 31. (See separate story regarding new faculty.)

• accepted about $18,964 in donations from 13 different entities.

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