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Bond issuance could save Lincoln Crossing residents millions

Approval of sale delayed a week
By: Steve Archer, Reporter
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Tuesday night’s Lincoln City Council meeting will be continued July 31 to allow for the approval of a bond sale that could save one neighborhood millions of dollars. Tuesday night’s meeting was not adjourned to avoid calling for a special meeting.

Homeowners in the Lincoln Crossing subdivision could stand to save $300 annually if City Council approves the sale of Special Tax Refunding bonds by the end of the month. Although the Lincoln City Council had the necessary votes to approve the bonds Tuesday night, Councilman Paul Joiner recused himself from voting on the item because he is a Lincoln Crossing resident.

Lincoln Support Services director Steve Ambrose said Tuesday the bond sale will benefit residents who live within Community Facility District 2003-1, the Lincoln Crossing Project. The district was formed in 2003 to fund public infrastructure. At the time, the city issued $98 million in special tax bonds for the district and then refinanced those bonds in 2007.

According to Ambrose’s staff report, the issuance will benefit from current interest rates.

“We have an opportunity to refund the bonds again, with the intent this time to benefit the property owners,” Ambrose said. “This lowers their annual assessment.”

The cost to refinance the bonds is $188,500 and will ultimately save Lincoln Crossing homeowners a total between $20 million and $25 million, Ambrose said.

However, the bond issuance must be approved by City Council July 31 (Tuesday) to meet the Sept. 1 deadline, Ambrose said.

Although the council had a quorum Tuesday night, or three councilmen that is the minimum needed to take action, Joiner’s recusal did not leave enough votes to approve the bond issuance. Councilman Peter Gilbert and Councilman Gabriel Hydrick were absent.

Water

The future of water in Lincoln will be discussed at the Aug. 7 Lincoln City Council special meeting and workshop. Councilman Dan Karleskint said representatives from both the Placer County Water Agency and the Nevada Irrigation District will be there.

Lincoln Mayor Stan Nader raised the question Tuesday of whether the city should remain in the water business.

“Should we continue to own the water system,” Nader asked. “One of our options may be selling the water system.”

Fire engine purchase approved

The Lincoln City Council voted 3-0 to approve the purchase of two Pierce Enforcer Type-1 fire engines for $1.3 million. Support Services director Ambrose said the purchase would be made through a tax-exempt, municipal lease.

“It’s just a loan with 10 equal payments,” Ambrose said. “The bank calls it a lease because it makes it easier to relinquish the asset if necessary.”

According to a staff report by Public Services supervisor Mike Osborne, the average age of the Lincoln Fire Department’s five Type-1 fire engines is 11.2 years, with four of them having more than 100,000 miles. Two of the oldest fire engines have been classified as unreliable, according to the report.

Lincoln and the city of Rocklin are buying a total of four fire engines together and buying the fire engines together provides a greater discount on the price, according to the report.