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County undertakes $25M in bonding

By Dan Hust
MONTICELLO — April 30, 2010 — On Tuesday, legislators (minus an absent Alan Sorensen) unanimously agreed to bond nearly $25 million for a variety of infrastructure projects.
County Manager David Fanslau said the amount initially was closer to $29 million, but legislators – worried about the county’s fiscal situation – scaled that back.
“Included will be $10.294 million of bonds for DPW [Division of Public Works] replacement equipment, the road paving program, and county bridges,” he explained. “Also, $6.2 million of Bond Anticipation Notes (BANs) will be converted to long-term bonds. The total non-solid waste-related MBBA [New York State’s Municipal Bond Bank Agency] participation is $16.499 million.”
Another $8.4 million, he added, will be bonded for design/engineering/construction management and the building of the central Transfer Station/Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) at the now-closed landfill in Monticello. A portion of that amount will also replace solid waste equipment and convert a solid waste-related BAN.
Fanslau felt the historically low interest rates for long-term financing would be beneficial to the county, and he pointed out that the MBBA program expires at year’s end.
Plus, the county has already received a surprisingly low bid on the road paving contract, he added. The project was pegged at $8.5 million, but the low bid (which was expected to be accepted by the Legislature yesterday) didn’t get past $7.6 million.
The non-solid-waste portion of the bonding, however, could lead to a two percent tax increase next year, though Fanslau said county staff will be working on that when budget preparations begin later this year.
“There are still a lot of unknown variables between now and the creation of the 2011 budget,” he remarked.
Fanslau expects the county to receive the cash from the bonding by late May.

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