Assistant Finance Director Will Smith said the city hasn’t issued bonds for this purpose before. However, due to historically low interest rates, this change from the traditional funding method should save the city $35 million over the course of 20 years, he added.
The Texas Attorney General will issue an opinion on the debt and a credit rating agency will rate the bonds in the coming weeks. The Texas Municipal Retirement System Board also will need to approve of an agreement related to the bonds and the city of Bryan at the end of October.
The bonds are expected to sell in late October. In November, the city of Bryan will make its payment to TMRS using the funds.
The council approved an ordinance to increase the expenditure budget appropriations for fiscal year 2020 from $425,047,631 to $451,307,631. The action is essentially a final step to wrap up the FY20 budget before moving into FY21 on Oct. 1.
“The vast majority of these items are not actually expenditures going out of the door,” Smith explained. “They’re actually just transfers from our capital reserve funds to the general fund for some drainage projects and then for some of the park construction and operations.”
Smith said such transfers account for about $20 million of the increase.
During the executive session, which is closed to the public, the council discussed “the possible sale, purchase, lease or conveyance of property in downtown, north, south, east and west Bryan and property commonly known as Queen Theatre,” according to the meeting agenda.