Hamilton County sells biggest bond issue ever for schools, jail upgrade

Hamilton County sells biggest bond issue ever for schools, jail upgrade

With AAA rating, county borrows at attractive 2.65 percent rate

March 6th, 2018 by Dave Flessner in Breaking News

Bolstered by a top rating from all three bond rating agencies, Hamilton County today priced a record $195 million of bonds at an attractive 2.65 percent interest rate.

The bond issue will pay for $110 million of school construction projects in Hamilton County, including two new schools, and for a new $20 million county jail. The favorable borrowing rate will also help the county refinance some of its debt and save more than $300,000.

Seven financial institutions bid on the right to buy the bonds and the winning bid was made by Citigroup Global markets.

"We are very pleased with the results of this morning's bidding, this is a terrific rate in today's current interest rate market," said Lauren Lowe, managing director for PFM Financial Advisors, which helped Hamilton County take its biggest bond issue ever to the market today.

Mayor Jim Coppinger also said he was pleased with the winning rate bid, calling it a great win for Hamilton County.

"This allows us to move forward with the capital projects that are needed for our schools as well as public safety needs," said Coppinger, who backed a property tax increase last fall to help pay for the bond-funded school and jail improvements. "This is another example of our conservative fiscal approach to governing as evidenced by our recent Triple-A bond rating by three major bond rating agencies. We know this is not our money, but the taxpayer's money and we are dedicated to using that money in the best possible way to benefit our residents."

The bond transaction is expected to be completed at the end of the month.