Wasatch County School Board issues bonds to refinance debt

The school board meets Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at the school district offices. During the meeting, the board is to refinance $14.5 million in existing voter-approved bonds at a lower interest rate.

According to the notice on the district’s website, the reissued bonds will mature in up to five years. Interest rates cannot exceed 5% per annum.

In other proposed actions, the school board will consider passing a resolution creating a local building authority for the Wasatch County School District. This is the first step the board must take if it intends to apply for rental revenue bonds.

Rental income bonds differ from general voter-approved bond bonds. The building authority essentially uses the school district’s buildings, rather than its ability to raise taxes, as collateral for the bonds. Although rental revenue bonds do not have to be approved by voters, they can carry a higher interest rate.

Rental revenue bonds can pay off any debt using a district’s existing revenue, the vast majority of which comes from property taxes. Lease revenue bonds can provide flexibility for future district budgets because the district can use many different funding sources to make debt payments.

In other business, the Wasatch County School Board is expected to approve next year’s budget, which includes district funding salary increases for district employees.

All staff, including teachers and administrators, will receive a 6% increase in their base salary. For employees receiving silver-level health insurance benefits, the district will continue to fund any increases. For employees who want better health coverage, they will see a 3.5% increase in their insurance premiums.

The board must also approve negotiation agreements with its superintendent and business administrator. A copy of these agreements is not included in the agenda details, as was the case for teachers and administrators.

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John A. Bogar