Boone County fire district to sell $7 million in bonds in August

Thursday, May 8, 2014 | 8:17 p.m. CDT; updated 8:39 p.m. CDT, Thursday, May 8, 2014

COLUMBIA — The Boone County Fire Protection District Board agreed Thursday to sell $7 million in bonds this August and the remaining $7 million next year.

Boone County voters approved on April 8 the Fire District's $14 million bond issue to refurbish or buy equipment and to build new facilities, according to previous Missourian reporting.

The bond the fire district issued in 1998 was A-rated, said Jack Dillingham, a financial adviser to the fire district. Since Columbia Public Schools' most recent bond was rated AA, he said there's reason to believe the fire district's newest bond will be rated more highly too.

The board decided to sell half the bonds this year because of spend-down regulation, which requires the money from bonds be spent in two years. Money from bonds issued this year would have to be spent by 2016.

"There's no way we can do the spend-down in two years for the full $14 million," Fire District Battalion Chief Gale Blomenkamp said.

The largest share of the bond money will go toward:

  • $1.5 million for land and a new station at Route HH
  • $1.5 million for a new station at Route E
  • $1.5 for countywide upgrades to breathing apparatuses and portable radios
  • $1.2 million for building renovations and equipment upgrades at Station 6 in Sturgeon

Blomenkamp said the notice of sale will go out mid-July, and the bidding will officially open Aug. 7.

Fire District Chief Scott Olsen said three committees will decide which projects to complete first and that they will meet next week.

Supervising editor is Adam Aton.

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