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Scottsbluff Public Schools saves $5.2 million on early bond repayment

Scottsbluff Public Schools saves $5.2 million on early bond repayment

Scottsbluff Public Schools saves $5.2 million on early bond repayment

SBPS Board Member Lori Browning watching a presentation during a Board of Education meeting on Monday. Browning, along with the other five board members, voted to pass a resolution allowing SBPS to continue refinancing a bond.

The savings keep rolling in for Scottsbluff Public Schools.

During a Monday night Board of Education meeting, SBPS Director of Finance Marianne Carlson announced the district plans to shave off $5.2 million in early repayment savings from a 2014 bond.

“And that is all passed on to our taxpayers, which is just great,” Carlson said.

The Board of Education approved a resolution on Monday to allow the district to continue refinancing the bond. The resolution was passed unanimously and without any discussion.

Voters passed the $29 million bond in 2014. The district used that money to remodel Scottsbluff High School. Since then, the district split the bond into two pieces, or issuances, one for the 2015 fiscal year and a smaller portion for the 2016 fiscal year.

The district initially sought to refinance in March. When the school board approved this move, the coronavirus had only just appeared on American shores. Shortly after the approval, Scottsbluff Public Schools closed its buildings — and entire sections of the economy were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

So, instead of cashing in on refinancing during a plummeting economy, Carlson and SBPS held their cards and waited for more favorable market conditions. In August, Carlson told the Board of Education the day had come to cash out.

Carlson announced that the 2015 portion of the bond was refinanced with a savings of $3.6 million.

“We did not refinance (the 2016 portion), at that time due to the fact that in six more months we could refinance interest-free,” Carlson said. “It is now six months later, and we are ready because there are savings there.”

With the smaller 2016 portion, Carlson said they saved taxpayers about $400,000. Before that, Carlson said the bond was refinanced in 2014 for a savings of $1.2 million.

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Reporter

Justin Garcia is a reporter with the Star-Herald. He can be reached at 308-632-9044 or justin.garcia@starherald.com.

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