Turlock school bond move to save $1.1 million
TURLOCK, Feb 24, 2013 (The Modesto Bee - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
Property owners should see some savings in their next tax bill thanks to a bond refinancing by the Turlock Unified School District.
The school board unanimously approved a measure Tuesday night to refinance a 2002 bond, which will save taxpayers about $1.1 million.
"We really just wanted to be good stewards of the taxpayers' money and return some of it to them," said Superintendent Sonny Da Marto.
The Measure D bond for $10.95 million paid for the construction of Sandra Tovar Medeiros Elementary School and Walnut Elementary Education Center, as well as modernization and construction on Dutcher Middle School.
The bonds were sold in 2004 to Morgan Stanley at 4.91 percent. They are eligible for no-cost refinancing at today's lower interest rates. Refinancing will cost the district about $66,000 in fees and expenses. But Da Marto said the benefit to taxpayers far outweighs the district's costs.
"We don't gain anything; in fact, it will cost us money," he said. "But our board was happy to be able to give back to the taxpayers who entrusted them to use this money to build schools."
Da Marto, who spoke earlier this week at the city's annual Chamber of Commerce breakfast, said the savings stands in contrast to other school districts that have passed costly bonds with bad financing.
"I wanted to assure the community that we haven't entered into bonds like that," he said.
Da Marto said he wasn't sure how much savings each taxpayer would see, but said it could show up by the tax bill in December.
Bee staff writer Marijke Rowland can be reached at email@example.com or (209) 578-2284. Follow her on Twitter, @turlocknow.
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