The Pettisville School Board voted to move ahead with a plan that could save the district more than $500,000 during its Monday, March 14 meeting.
The board voted to refinance the bonds that the district issued to construct the new school building.
Currently, the interest payment on the bonds for 2016 totals $187,559.
After refinancing, the interest payment for 2016 will be $171,207.
Based on current interest rates and the 20-year term of the bonds, the projected savings would reach $533,288.
Financial advisors and the district bond counsel recommended the refinancing.
Chris Lee, district treasurer, said, “I am confident that this is a positive for our district.”
Paid In Full
The board also approved spending $30,000 to pay off the debt on the Pettisville school atrium.
The atrium connects the new building with the remaining portion of the old building.
The Ohio School Facilities Commission, which provided the major portion of money to build the new school, would not pay for construction of the atrium.
The Pettisville School Foundation raised approximately $856,000 of the $915,000 total cost of the atrium project.
To fund the remainder, the school and the PSF negotiated a lease-purchase agreement, which required the district to pay the roughly $59,000 difference over time.
The PSF notified the board if it is willing to make a $30,000 lump sum payment toward the agreement, the Foundation will consider it payment in full and the district will save $29,000 of its previous commitment.
Tax Collection Up
Lee reported revenue from real estate tax collections was up $14,000 over the same period last year.
General fund revenue was up $12,000 and the permanent improvement fund was up $6,000.
Lee said delinquent tax collection had increased and helped improve the revenue picture, as well.
Steve Switzer, superintendent, reported Pettisville had to defer, or not generate, an estimated $16,179 worth of electricity with the school wind turbine.
In a nutshell, state law says the district is not allowed to generate more electricity with the wind turbine than it uses.
The district is seeking ways to transfer some of the natural gas cost to electric usage to take better advantage of the power generated by the wind turbine.
Switzer reported on some ongoing projects, including landscaping, padding for ball field backstops, and boosting cell phone signals inside the building to increase communication in case of emergency.– D.J. Neuenschwander