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Conway Public Schools are refinancing about $77.9 million in two bonds for lower interest rates that are expected to save the district up to about $5.5 million total over the life of the bonds, said Scott Beardsley, senior vice president of Beardsley Public Finance, a division of Crews and Associates.
“The big picture element of it is just that the local school district is able to take advantage of the low interest rates we are experiencing nationwide,” Beardsley said.
Beardsley handles bonds for the school district.
The Conway School Board approved Tuesday refinancing two bonds — one for $41.3 million, for 2.91 percent interest for 21 years or less, and one for about $36.6 million, for 3.49 percent interest for 27 years or less, according to documents presented to board members. Both bonds’ interest rates currently are a little more than 4 percent, according to documents. Low interest rates available this year mean the district saves millions by refinancing, Beardsley said.
The savings from the larger bond must be used for academic purposes, like for new or renovated academic buildings, but the other is unrestricted, Beardsley said. The refinancing will put $2 million in the district’s bank account this year and the district gets about $1 million each year for the next two years, he said.
Conway school district has about $135 million total in bonds. The school district refinanced a bond of about $1.49 million this past June for a savings of about $188,100.