LASD bond refinance saves taxpayers more than $2.5 million

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Los Altos School District officials refinanced existing general-obligation bonds Jan. 16, resulting in approximately $2.7 million in savings to taxpayers over the next 10 years.

The district borrowed money at lower interest rates to pay off bonds that carried higher interest rates. The savings from the refinancing will be passed on to district taxpayers in the form of slightly lower property-tax assessments.

“The board takes its fiduciary responsibility to our highly supportive community very seriously,” said Superintendent Jeff Baier. “With this action, the board reaffirmed its commitment to maintaining sound public finances for our district and our community.”

The 2013 refunding bonds refinanced approximately $26.15 million of outstanding general-obligation bonds. The original interest rate was 4.93 percent, while the rate on refunding bonds was 1.19 percent.

Moody’s Rating Service praised the management practices of district.

“During the past five years, when many districts were spending reserves due to funding cuts, the district has built a healthy level of reserves that provides it additional operational flexibility during periods of uncertainty,” Moody’s officials said.

Doug Smith, district board president, said he was “pleased to see our responsible financial practices recognized and our prudent planning” benefit taxpayers.

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