City sells all of its city hall bonds

Sequim Gazette staff

All of the municipal bonds for the City of Sequim’s new city hall and police station sold on July 25.


Sequim will receive $10,439,000 by Aug. 15 from the sale of the bonds by D.A. Davidson & Co. The limited tax general obligation bonds sold at 4.53-percent interest, city officials said, and First Federal and Sound Community Bank purchased some of them.


Elray Konkel, Sequim administrative services director, said the bonds were fully subscribed or reserved within an hour of trading.


“(That) means they were priced right and the credit quality was right,” he said.


The bonds will pay for the civic center along with $2.5 million from general government funds — including the public safety tax funds — and $2.5 million from utilities, with the project estimated at between $15 million and $15.5 million.


The city plans to repay the bonds back at $660,000 a year over 30 years.


To make this payment annually, the city can draw on savings of $200,000 in rent, $225,000 from the public safety tax, $75,000 from the real estate excise tax and $160,000 from the general fund.


Sequim recently received an AA- rating from Standard & Poor’s in San Francisco, Calif., after a meeting about the city’s finances past and present.


Konkel said the rating was critical in the bonds selling quickly and at good rates.


“With the AA- rating, it meant a whole other group of people called immediately that might not have without the rating,” he said.


From here, the city awaits proposals from three design-build teams for the civic center expected to be complete in the fall. Residents will have an opportunity to provide input before city council chooses a design-build team and project. Construction is tentatively set to begin in early 2014 and to be completed in 2015.


For more information on the project, call the City of Sequim at 683-4139.


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