LAKEPORT, Calif. – The Lakeport Unified School District Board voted last month to refinance outstanding general obligation bonds, a decision that is anticipated to result in large savings for district taxpayers.
The refinancing of the $1.64 million in bonds, which the board trustees authorized at their Oct. 10 meeting, will save the district’s property owners an estimated $52,000 in taxes over the next three years, according to district officials.
“Our board felt that as stewards of tax dollars, it was the right thing to do,” said district Superintendent Erin Smith-Hagberg. “The passage of time and a lower interest rate environment provided the opportunity to refund the old bonds.”
Two-thirds of voters in the district’s November 2001 election approved a $7.5 million general obligation bond measure, according to board documents.
Those bond proceeds were used to repair and renovate classrooms in the schools and construct the Marge Alakszay Center multipurpose building.
The district reported that the interest rates on the outstanding bonds from the 2002 authorization ranged from 4.25 percent to 4.75 percent.
The interest rates for the new bonds to be issued this December will range from 1.28 percent to 1.83 percent, a difference that the district said will save property owners $52,000 over the next three years.
Additionally, the report to the board indicated the refinancing cost the district nothing and did not extend the bond term.
“If we have an opportunity to save local taxpayers money, especially in this economy, then we should pursue it,” said Lakeport Unified School Board President Phil Kirby.
District officials said property owners in the district will see a reduced tax rate on future tax bills.