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  • By Lisa Brody

First series of bonds for updating schools sold

The Birmingham Public Schools Board of Education announced the sale of $52.13 million worth of school building and site and refunding bonds, the first in a series of bonds following the March 10 approval of $195 million bond proposal to address facility needs and funding enhancements through 2026. According to James Larson-Shidler, assistant superintendent for business services at the district, a portion of the proceeds of the bonds, in the amount of $45.64 million, representing the first series of bonds from the March authorization, are being issued for the purpose of remodeling, equipping, re-equipping, furnishing, refurnishing school buildings, gymnasiums, pool facilities, athletic fields, playgrounds and other facilities; erecting, completing, equipping and furnishing classroom additions, auxiliary gymnasium additions at the high schools and other additions to school buildings and new facilities at the high school athletic fields; preparing, developing and improving sites at school buildings, athletic fields, playgrounds and other facilities and the purchase of school buses; and acquiring and installing instructional technology infrastructure and equipment in school buildings and other facilities and paying a portion of the costs of issuing the bonds. The remaining $6.5 million of the bond proceeds will be used to refund portions of the districts outstanding 2010 refunding bonds, which are due and payable on May 1, 2021, through May 1, 2024, as well as paying for the costs associated with issuing the bonds. The bonds were sold at an interest rate of 2.3 percent with a final maturity of 2040, a repayment term of approximately 20 years. Financing was conducted by the Michigan investment banking office of the brokerage firm Stifel, the municipal advising firm, PFM Financial Advisors LLC, and law firm Miller, Canfield, Paddock and Stone acting as bond counsel. “We are thrilled with the outcome of our recent bond sales,” said Birmingham Schools Superintendent Mark Dziatczak. “The bond refunding will save taxpayers a considerable amount of money while the favorable interest rate achieved in the bond market for our new notes will allow the district to enhance learning environments and school facilities.”

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