SSISD trustees must decide bond election question by Monday
Faith Huffman | News-Telegram News Editor

Aug. 9, 2005 -- Southwest Securities consultant Dan A. Almon advised school officials Monday that the board would have to hold a special meeting by Monday, Aug. 15, if they plan to call an Oct. 12 election for a $9.93 million bond to fund renovations and additions at Sulphur Springs High School.

Almon presented data to school officials during Monday night’s board meeting regarding his analysis of the tax rate and other issues pertinent to a bond program. He recommended that bond be issued in two series so that both can be considered “bank qualified.” He also recommended that if the board decides to call for the bond that the district seek a legal procedure to see 4.6 cents of the tax rate currently going toward the maintenance and operation fund be redistributed for interest and sinking purposes. He also noted that over the course of the 25-years during which the bond would be repaid, that the bonds could be refunded for better interest rates to keep payments from rising and assist the district in repayment of the debt.

He also noted that, depending on whether the district decided to wait until after the bond election, if one is called, to issue tax notices for 2005 would affect how the interest on the debt is repaid at the first year.

If approved, the overall tax rate would rise from $1.50465 to $1.56978 the first year and to $1.58118 the second, according to information Almon provided. The maintenance and operations tax would remain at $1.42558 while the interest and sinking fund would increase from $0.07907 to $0.14420 the first year and $0.15560 the second year then begin dropping again the third year to $0.151, then 0.149 the fourth and so forth.

In other words, the $9.93 million bond issue as presented by Almon Monday would mean about $65 additional property tax the first year for the owner of a home valued at $100,000, increasing their bill from from $1,505 to $1,570 the first year and to $1,582 the second.

Almon noted that the figures presented were conservative estimates based on current interest rates and available information but should be considered as a “working tool” to help the board get started should they decide to call the bond.

The numbers could be revised should it be determined a larger bond would be needed to make the renovations and additions at the high school.

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