Hawaii County plans to reap the benefits of low rates of interest and its wonderful bond score to refinance as much as $357 million in bonds.
The County Council is scheduled to vote on the plan, Invoice 191, throughout its assembly Wednesday.
One of many bond score companies, Customary &Poors, in December raised the county’s credit standing, a transfer that sometimes lowers the rate of interest on borrowing. County Finance Director Deanna Sako stated the score was raised from AA- to AA.
The county’s present excellent debt, together with bonds, state revolving loans, financial institution notes and bonds reimbursable by the Division of Water Provide, now stands at $449.four million, down from the $477.6 million it owed a yr in the past.
The quantity, nonetheless, doesn’t embrace $103 million the council permitted in March for highway tasks. Sako instructed the council earlier this month that bond problem would exit individually in October.
Nor does it embrace the $40 million the state loaned the county for lava restoration. Beneath questioning from Puna Councilwoman Ashley Kierkiewicz, Sako stated she hasn’t included it within the report as a result of the county hasn’t spent it but.
Refinancing pays off varied beforehand issued bonds and creates new bond debt “to be able to obtain debt service financial savings and different advantages for the county within the administration of its debt obligations,” in line with Invoice 191.
Sako stated Friday that the administration doesn’t plan to instantly refinance all of the bonds. As a substitute, she stated, the invoice will give the division the pliability to take action, pending market circumstances and Inside Income Service guidelines. The $17.6 million 2010 “B” bonds could be those most probably to be refinanced, she stated.
“We hope to avoid wasting $2.6 million over the following 9 years by refunding the 2010 B bonds,” Sako stated. “The annual funds will likely be lowered barely, however we gained’t see the financial savings till subsequent fiscal yr.”
The county budgeted $59.four million to pay principal and curiosity on its bond debt through the fiscal yr that began July 1. Whereas which may appear to be a considerable chunk out of a $585 million total county working price range, it’s beneath limits imposed by common accounting ideas and state legislation.
Sako, responding to council questions, stated property tax collections had been sturdy for the primary assortment interval that ended final week. Some massive property homeowners, equivalent to inns, labored out cost plans with the county to assist delay among the massive funds till later this yr, she stated.
“We did count on inns advert others would have issues and we budgeted for that,” Sako stated.
The Tax Board of Evaluate will proceed listening to appeals of property taxes in September.
No matter how revenues are understanding, debt funds should come off the highest, she stated.
“Per the constitution, we can’t regulate debt service. That’s one thing that’s type of like our highest precedence,” Sako stated. “So these funds would all the time be made and we’d have to chop one thing else.”
Beneath new COVID-19 procedures, public testimony is not going to be taken in-person. As a substitute, the general public can present oral testimony through WebEx. To register for entry to the assembly, electronic mail Jeanette Aiello at [email protected] or name 961-8255 no later than midday at this time.
E mail Nancy Prepare dinner Lauer at [email protected]