On Nov. 2, the Mancos Public Library announced it had closed on a refinancing of two loans that helped pay for the current building’s construction.
The library originally took out the loans in 2007 and 2009, at interest rates of 5.4 and 6.25 percent, respectively. Paid for with library district tax bonds, they funded the building now located at 211 E. First St., Mancos. Library executive director Lee Hallberg said the refinancing will result in lower annual payments for the library.
“We’re trying to be more mindful of how we use taxpayers’ money,” he said.
The new lease purchase loan is for $1.24 million, at a fixed interest rate of 3.08 percent. Taxpayers will not see immediate results from the lower interest rate, Hallberg said, but he estimated the lower interest rate would save the district more than $225,000 over the remaining 26 years before the loan is paid off. In a Thursday press release, he said the lower payments will free up funds for more library programs. The loan is also structured to allow the library to pay off its debts a year earlier than originally planned, with the option to prepay even sooner, without a penalty, if the money becomes available.
Hallberg said this year was the library’s first opportunity to refinance its loans at a lower interest rate. Gaining those lower payments is one of several goals in the library’s long-range plan that have been accomplished recently, he said, along with the passage of a mill levy in the 2016 election.
“It’s a win-win for both the library and the taxpayers in the district,” he said in the release.
He thanked investment banking firm George K. Baum and Co. for guiding library staff through the loan and refinancing process.