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Finance Committee Update: Nov. 16, 2021

Nov. 16, 2021

During this month's Finance Board Advisory Committee, Chief Financial Officer Joël Scheible discussed this month's finance-related board agenda items.

Lindbergh Schools and other Missouri school districts have transitioned to Standard and Poor's bond rating service, which will help the district take advantage of lower interest rates on future bonds. A portion of the district's Prop G 2014 bonds, which were used to build Dressel Elementary School, have been rated by Standard and Poor's as high-grade AA bonds. As a best practice, the Lindbergh Schools Chief Financial Officer reviews debt and interest rates on an ongoing basis.

When an opportunity arises to refinance debt to save costs within the Debt Service Fund, action is taken. Right now, interest rates are low, so refinancing the bonds will result in savings to the debt service fund totaling approximately $3.9 million. In October, the Board of Education approved a resolution authorizing the sale of these general obligation refunding bonds. Next, the board will vote on approval of a resolution authorizing the issuance, sales and delivery of bonds. A tentative competitive sale date for the bonds has been set for Nov. 30.

In addition, the district is planning to re-issue Certificates of Participation in 2022, to support the facilities master plan and meet the needs of the Lindbergh High School construction project. The LHS project had an unanticipated budget add of approximately $4 million due to a change of St. Louis County code requirements, which resulted in the addition of another gym/FEMA-rated storm shelter. In addition, the district is planning to renovate the existing LHS library to create a dedicated center for gifted education. This addition will create space in other district buildings by moving gifted programming to a permanent home.

Committee members also reviewed the independent auditor's report and audited financial statements, which is prepared for the district on an annual basis. The district's auditors, Fick, Eggemeyer and Williamson, presented the report. The audit opinion is once again an unmodified or “clean” opinion.

The committee's next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 14.