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Miami Yoder district considers bond refinance, levy override

The Miami-Yoder School District Board of Education voted July 11 to begin refinancing bonds issued in 2005 and 2008. Lower interest rates could save the district and taxpayers $144,000 throughout the life of the bonds.ìWhen we look at it, you would save about $8,000 per year, which doesn’t seem like a lot, but is about a 6 percent present value savings over the life of the bonds,î said Michael Persichitte of George K. Baum and Company, the district’s bond advisory firm. A refinance could be the best option, if the district is able to save at least 3 percent of the value of the bond, Perischitte said.The bonds were issued as part of mill levy elections in 2005 and 2008. Under Colorado Taxpayer Bill of Rights laws, the savings must be used to either pay down the debt at a faster pace or to refund the taxpayers, unless a mill levy override is approved by voters. When the 2005 bond is paid off in 2017, the portion of the mill levy dedicated to that bond is scheduled to expire. A mill levy override ballot measure, if placed on the ballot and passed, would allow the district to use the refinance savings for other purposes or continue to collect the portion of the mill levy that was scheduled to expire, Persichitte said.ìYou have a fairly significant stair-step as that bond is paid off going from 2017 into 2018,î Persichitte said. ìWhat the board can do is go to the voters and ask for the override to achieve more general revenues dollars without a tax increase. The mill rate would stay at the same level overall.îThe ballot measure would need to be passed by the 2016 election to apply to the mill levy savings from the 2005 bond payoff. The mill levy override proposed by the bond firm would include specific line items defining how the levy revenues would be spent. ìThere is a hesitancy to throw money into the black hole of government spending, so they’ll want to know you’re accountable for it,î Persichitte said.New faces for 2015-2016 school yearThree new teachers will join Miami-Yoder School this fall. First grade, sixth grade and physical education teachers were hired for the new school year. Dwight Barnes, former assistant principal at Vista Ridge High School in Falcon School District 49, started a one-year contract during the summer as superintendent.Barnes takes over administrative duties from Morris Ververs, interim superintendent. Ververs was hired by the district after Richard Walterís contract was terminated in February.

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