The final documents to refinance Certificates of Participation (COPs) issued to fund major city projects were approved Monday by the Washington City Council.
Refinancing of the COPs will result in a savings of $5,931,229.81 over the life of the issue, according to a letter to the council from City Administrator Jim Briggs. “This calculates as a net present value of $4,635,229.23,” Briggs states in the letter.
Council members unanimously approved an ordinance Monday night authorizing the sale and delivery of the refunding COPs.
The council previously selected the Edward Jones investment firm as the city’s banker for the refunding of the 2008 and 2012 COPs.
Briggs noted that last week the latest interest rates were “locked in” resulting in savings slightly more than an original estimate given in March.
Chris Collier of Edward Jones said the rates obtained for the refinancing are “very aggressive,” averaging about 3 percent over the 18-year life of the issue. Under the previous issue, the average interest rate was about 4.65 percent, he told the council Monday.
“We’ve had a lot of success marketing the bonds both locally and around the state,” Collier noted.
Briggs, in his letter, noted that the city has been given an overall long-term rating of AA- by Standard & Poor’s, which he said is “excellent” given the economic conditions in recent years.
Collier said AA- is an “outstanding rating” for a community.
The original 2008 COPs were issued to finance the city’s share of the Highway 100 widening project which was done in partnership with the Missouri Department of Transportation. The city later issued COPs to advance fund building projects, including the city library renovation and a new fire training facility. The COPs also were issued to finance a new automated water metering system now being installed.