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Examiner
  • Independence City Council again approves refinancing

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    For the third time in just as many months, the city of Independence is celebrating the benefit of low interest rates.

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  • For the third time in just as many months, the city of Independence is celebrating the benefit of low interest rates.
    The City Council Monday night approved an emergency ordinance to borrow $52,525,000 million for the financing and refinancing of costs of electric utility projects.
    The city also had found good interest rates in August when it approved debt issues for sanitary sewer system improvements, as well as in October with the refinancing of debt issued for the Events Center construction and the Centerpoint and Eastland TIF projects.
    The most recent financing and refinancing equals a total savings of $5.9 million for the city and the electric utility, said Jim Harlow, the city’s director of finance and administration.
    The city opted to refund debt issued in 2009 for electric system improvements. In refinancing that $31.4 million borrowed three years ago, it also allowed for the sale of obligations to fund electric system capital projects totaling $20 million, with interest rates ranging from 3 to 4 percent. Those funds will go toward Power & Light Department improvements planned for the next 12 months.
    According to the city, in looking at the bond buyer’s 20-year general obligation index, the average interest rate since January 1987 has been 5.52 percent, ranging from nearly 9.25 in January 1988 to 3.37 percent in late November.
    “We have been very fortunate to be able to do this,” Harlow said. “I wish we could refinance others, but I think we, at this point and time, we’ll slow down on those.”
     
     
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