Government, Latest News, Monongalia County

Mon Commission seeks savings through justice center refinancing

MORGANTOWN — In 2014, roughly $18 million in bonds were issued to finance the transformation of the former Harley O. Staggers federal building into the Monongalia County Justice Center. 

Due to the county’s high credit rating at the time, those bonds were issued with a seven-year call, meaning any time after Feb. 1, 2021, the county could pay off or refinance all or part of the transaction. 

The Monongalia County Commission initiated that process Wednesday, approving on first reading a set of 2021 bonds that will refund the 20-year, 2014 bonds originally set to mature Feb. 1, 2034.

“The idea here is that refunding these bonds now will provide some pretty significant debt service savings to the building commission, which then gets passed on to the county commission,” Jason Turner of Steptoe & Johnson said.

Monongalia County Administrator Rennetta McClure said there is about $13 million outstanding on the justice center, and this refinancing is expected to save the county about $1.5 million. 

Also Wednesday, the commission approved $5,000 for the 4th of July Celebration of America festivities at the request of the City of Morgantown. Morgantown City Council approved $15,000 for the event during its April 20 session. 

Lastly, the commission issued a proclamation declaring April 2021 Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

The proclamation, which was accepted by Carl Phlegar of the Rape and Domestic Violence Information Center, matches a proclamation issued by the City of Morgantown earlier this month.

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