Copenhaver: Reworking bonds could save $2.6 million for Berkeley County taxpayers

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — Saying it’s a chance to take advantage of historically low interest rates, the Berkeley County Council completed its third bond refunding of the year Wednesday.

Doug Copenhaver

Council President Doug Copenhaver said, “When interest rates began moving lower in May, the County jumped at the opportunity to lock in lower rates.” He called the savings a truly a once-in-a-lifetime event.

Wednesday’s announcement followed a bond reissue totaling $18,390,000 related to the Judicial Complex.

County Administrator Alan Davis told the Panhandle News Network the reissuing of bonds stands to save taxpayers $2.6 million.

He said pay-off dates ‘had’ been 2033, 2034, and 2035. Those are all now due at the end of 2029, the earlier payoff translating to savings on interest rates.

Much of the money borrowed involve the costs associated with purchasing and retro-fitting properties for county use.

Davis broke down the numbers in an email to the Panhandle News Network:

“The 2020C reissues totaling $18,390,000 were for the Judicial Center. These were the ones we closed on earlier today. The 2020B reissues in the amount of $2,320,000 was a refinancing 802 Emmett Rousch Drive (the Emergency Services/911 Center) and the $8.1 million 2020A bond issue represented $3.9 million for the reuse/renovation of 520 S. Raleigh Street for the BC (Berkeley County) Day Report Center and the refinancing of $4.2 million that had been used to purchase the 510/520 S. Raleigh Street (Kimco) property,” Davis said in an email.

Berkeley County currently has an investment grade rating of Aa2 from Moody’s
Investor Service.

The Berkeley County Council has been refinancing existing debt for the past six months, according to Copenhaver.

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