The Monmouth County Improvement Authority went to the bond market and came away with a lower interest rate on its debt, which made a lower rate possible for Asbury Park, too. The City is getting bonds that it had placed through the Authority, in 1995, reduced from a rate of 7.5% to 4%, a savings of $55,000, said the City's acting CFO, Christine Paulin.
The City Council authorized the refunding of the bonds today at a special meeting of the council held in the conference room across from City Manager Terry Reidy's office. The original amount borrowed through the county amounted to $2,215,000 in1995. The actual balance on the 16 year-old bonds, the amount to be refinanced, is $760,000, which includes $20,000 to pay for bond counsel, the auditor's bill and other costs, said Paulin. In that respect it is similar to when a homeowner refinances their house, the fees connected with that refinance are added into the amount borrowed. It is interesting to note how long it takes to pay these debts off. A little over two million borrowed 16 years ago is still the better part of one million dollars. According to Paulin, the "total indebtedness" for the City is $13 million. (Earlier stories have more on AP's municipal debt in mandatory filings at http://www.emma.msrb.org/) The lower interest rate should help pay off the refunded balance faster.
The public can comment on the bond refunding at the next special meeting when it will be put to vote: March 7, at 9 AM.