At their regular monthly board meeting on Tuesday Feb. 18, the Keizer Fire District Board of Directors approved the bank financing of the second series of bonds in the current strong financial market and increase the value of the bonds, whiles saving taxpayers money in rates, term, and interest — the first series of bonds were sold in March of 2016.
The bond funds are to buy fire trucks, ambulances and equipment.
The rates, term, and interest winning trifecta can be explained as follows; The property tax rate for the bonds was set at $0.14 cents per 1,000 for property owners. The refinancing came in at $0.13 cents per 1,000 as a lower tax rate for property owners. The 20-year term of the bond was reduced to 16 years of payments instead of 20 years. The interest rate is at a low 2.5% interest.
The perfect storm of market rates, interest and investor demand for stable investments provided a startling $1.9 million in interest savings to KFD tax payers over the length of the fire equipment bond funding while yielding $6.3 million instead of $5.9 million in emergency equipment for KFD.
KFD put the funds to work immediately, ordering two more ambulances, a fire truck, and a wild-land firefighting vehicle (brush truck). The timing of the orders, combined with avoiding 2020 cost increases on equipment, yielded another $80,000 in cost savings.
Speaking on behalf of the KFD Board of Directors, Board President Chet Patterson expressed his approval of the financial move.
“It is always a win to make good decisions, save our tax payers money and get the necessary equipment out there for our fire district to handle emergencies,” Patterson said.