The City of Battle Ground reduced its financial obligations today by paying off a general obligation bond used to pay for the City Hall building.
The 20 year-bond was first issued in 2003 at $4.07 million for the purchase of the public facility and was refinanced in 2010 for a lower interest rate, saving $188,000 in interest.
Today, the bond balance of $560,000 was paid in full, three years before the 2023 due date, saving an additional $32,375 in interest.
Deputy Mayor Philip Johnson introduced the idea of paying off the bond at its earliest prepayment date of December 1 at an August 2020 City Council Study Session. A unanimous vote of the city council on October 19 formalized the 2020 budget amendment to pay off the bond using unreserved Real Estate Excise Tax (REET) funds. The use of REET funds is restricted by state law and may only be used for capital projects, such as public facilities.
“The city is committed to efficient use of taxpayers’ dollars,” said Deputy Mayor Johnson, “Saving interest costs and proactively managing debt benefits the city and most importantly the people we serve.”
City council has also proposed that an outstanding Parks general obligation bond be paid off at its earliest prepayment date of December 1, 2021. The balance of the loan at that time will be $1.775 million and the early payoff would save $140,160 in interest. The city’s 2021 proposed budget calls for utilizing REET funds to pay off the Parks bond loan in December of 2021. The city council is scheduled to adopt the final 2021 budget before the end of this year.