Build America Bond reissue could save District $700,000 +

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By David Meade

The Anderson School District One Board of Trustees meeting was held Thursday (Jan. 30) after being postponed due to inclement weather on Tuesday. The Board approved a reissue of bonds, discussed a local option sales tax, approved the 2014-15 school calendar. The Board also approved personnel and renewed a contract for Superintendent David Havird for the 2014-15 school year.

Following a presentation by Frannie Heizer, bond attorney with the McNair Law Firm and Mike Gallagher of Southwest Securities of Columbia, the board approved a resolution authorizing the issuance and sale of refunding bonds not exceeding $24.9 million.

The resolution authorizes Superintendent David Havird to approve a reissue of bonds for the school district as needed.

According to Gallagher, the Build America Bonds which were related to the recently completed building program, had a provision allowing them to be reissued if the Federal government didn’t rebate money for them.

According to Gallagher, if payment was received from the IRS/Treasury by March, the bonds could be recalled.

By reissuing the bonds, the District could save $700,000 to $800,000 in interest, Gallagher said.

Heizer told the board by allowing the superintendent flexibility with the resolution, later maturities could be refinanced at a later date which would maximize savings for the district.

The maturities being reissued are yearly payments ranging from $100,000 to $1.48 million that were scheduled through March of 2025.

The resolution will have to be approved by the County Board of Education and will be presented mid February Superintendent Havird said.

The board also approved a resolution in support of a one cent local option sales tax which would bring additional funding to all five Anderson County School Districts. The tax is estimated to generate an additional $4,129,038. The funding will be allocated to each school district based on enrollment numbers, Havird said.

According to Havird, the funds will be used for safety and security infrastructure, instruction and technology programs and a Career and Technology Center similar to what Anderson School District One and Two have, for the other three districts.

The funds can be used for debt service and could result in a tax rollback for property owners and small businesses.

The resolution encourages the local legislative delegation to move forward with a referendum on this issue for the 2014 Nov. general election.

The board also approved the 2014-2015 school calendar which includes a Fall Break around election day and typical holidays and a Spring Break similar to the current calendar according to Assistant Superintendent Robbie Binnicker.

The board unanimously approved policy updates for students and employees related to health issues.

Policies include GBGA – Staff Health; GBG-R – Staff Health Rule; JLCC – Communicable/Infectious Diseases; and JLCDB – Use of Epinephrine Auto Injectors.

Distributors of the Epinephrine auto-injectors have made them available free for each of the 14 schools. The district has trained nurses on staff that can administer the injections if needed, Havird said.

Following an executive session, the Board unanimously approved a one year contract for Superintendent David Havird and other personnel.

During the meeting, Assistant Superintendent Jane Harrison presented information on curriculum, instruction and technology.

Harrison said the district has 356 teachers using new IPads and related apps for student instruction.

She also presented information on Schools to Watch, Bosch grants and training.