Battle Ground school district saves taxpayers $5M

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Battle Ground Public Schools took advantage of historically low interest rates Thursday and refinanced more than $43 million in construction bonds.

The move will save district taxpayers $4,996,000 over the next 11 years.

The low bid was 1.813763 percent by Citigroup Global Markets. The district has been paying an average of 5.07 percent on the bonds.

Property owners will realize the savings in their property taxes beginning in 2013.

Based on 2012 assessed values, the owner of a $250,000 house would save approximately $27 for each of the first two years, then save $20 each of the remaining nine years.

The $43,140,000 in school construction bonds sold Thursday was part of a $62.9 million bond measure approved by voters in 2005 for several new schools, and additions and improvements to others.

Nine firms entered bids Thursday.

MaryBeth Lynn, the district's assistant superintendent for finance and school operations, said she "didn't sleep at all last night" in nervous anticipation of Thursday's sale.

Lynn said two weeks ago she was conservatively predicting the new interest rate would be in the 2.2 to 2.4 percent range.