HANFORD — College of the Sequoias completed the refinancing of bonds that will save taxpayers in Hanford, Visalia and Tulare more than $12 million, according to college officials.
“It’s money back in the pockets of the taxpayers and we’re really happy that this worked out in this manner,” said Christine Statton, COS vice president of administrative services.
COS refinanced $46,016,140 from four series of general obligation bonds across its three improvement areas – Hanford, Visalia and Tulare – cutting interest rates nearly in half and saving local taxpayers $12,270,871.
“We closely monitored the interest rate market and took action to maximize savings for our district residents,” said Stan Carrizosa, superintendent/president of COS. “By bundling the bonds, we were able to save even more on staff time and issuance costs.”
Hanford taxpayers will save $3,491,207 from refinancing $13,540,000 of Measure C general obligation bonds that were approved by district voters in 2006. The interest rate of the new bonds was reduced from 5 percent to 2.78 percent.
Taxpayers in Visalia, Farmersville, Exeter, Woodlake and surrounding communities will save $5,445,412 from refinancing $18,271,140 of two series of Measure I general obligation bonds that were approved by district voters in 2008. The interest rates of the refinanced bonds, Series A and Series C, were reduced from 5.39 percent to 2.84 percent and 5.84 percent to 3.42 percent, respectively.
Taxpayers in Tulare, Lindsay, Corcoran and surrounding communities will save $3,334,246 from refinancing $14,205,000 of Measure J general obligation bonds that were approved by district voters in 2008. The interest rate of the new bonds was reduced from 5.40 percent to 2.86 percent.
Dale Scott & Company served as the financial adviser to help the district refinance the bonds and take advantage of lower interest rates without lengthening the payback period.
“College of the Sequoias prioritized taxpayer savings throughout the refinancing process, and it clearly paid off,” said Mark Farrell, senior financial adviser for Dale Scott & Company. “Savings across all three districts surpassed even our own projections.”
The voter-approved bond measures provided funds to build permanent educational centers in Hanford and Tulare, and to refurbish and upgrade facilities on the Visalia campus, among several other educational improvements for residents of Tulare and Kings counties.
“It makes a difference, even if it’s a dollar,” Lori Cardoza, a COS trustee, said.