Bond refinance to save Aurora school district over $200,000

Steve Chapman

The Aurora R-8 School Board voted to refund $2.18 million in general obligation bonds during their meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 18. As a result, the district will save more than $200,000 in interest on the their bond obligation over the next 10 years.
Dr. Billy Redus, superintendent of the Aurora R-8 School District, said the bonds were refinanced due to a recent reduction in interest rates.
“The district was paying three-percent on the original bonds,” he said. “With the refinancing, the district will now be paying 1.95-percent. The bond market recently hit an all-time low which was the reason for taking advantage of the refinancing. The refinancing is expected to save the district $200,282 over … 10 years.”
Redus said the bonds were originally issued about five years ago to pay for upgrades to the district’s school buildings.
“The bonds were used for renovations and security upgrades,” he said. “The issue was originally passed in 2014, and the money was spent between 2014 and 2016. Some of the specific examples were: new roofing and windows in the Robinson Building, security camera upgrades in multiple buildings, flooring and security fencing at the junior high, efficient lighting in multiple buildings, and other maintenance needs in multiple buildings.”
The bond issue was passed, Redus said, so the district’s operating fund would have money available to take care of other needs.
“By passing a bond issue, the district does not have to transfer money to the Capital Project Fund (money used to pay for upgrades, maintenance and renovations),” he said. “By leaving the money in the Operating Fund, the district can use the money to increase salaries, purchase supplies and provide other necessities for student learning.”
Redus also said refinancing the bonds shows the board is working to be responsible with school resources.
“It is the responsibility of the district to use funds effectively and efficiently,” he said. “I believe this refinancing shows the district is trying to do what is needed to ensure this happens.”
The bonds are expected to be paid off by 2029.


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