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Refinancing two bonds saves Frazee School District thousands

The Frazee-Vergas School District will be saving some major bucks thanks to refinancing opportunities and interest rates nearly bottoming out.

The school board voted unanimously Monday night to refinance two 2004 bonds, saving about $154,600.

The two bonds are worth about $2.7 million, and were refinanced with a .6623 percent interest rate for the next six years. Yes, less than 1 percent.

The low bidder for refinancing bonds was United Bankers Bank of Bloomington.

Other notable happenings at the board meeting:

• The Oct. 8 board meeting will be held in Vergas at the event center. The meeting is at 6 p.m., and a referendum meeting will likely be held the same night after the regular board meeting.

• Earlier this year, the district advertised for bids on the industrial technology house project. With a new teacher coming in though, the district decided to hold off a year and pulled the ad. One family -- Virgil and Sharon Jons expressed interest in purchasing a house from the school though.

Superintendent Chuck Cheney said they are purchasing a lot in town and would like to purchase the student-built house for it.

Cheney asked the board whether the district should give them first dibs on the house that will actually built next school year, or if it should be advertised again next spring.

The board agreed that the Jons should have first dibs since they also answered the ad and expressed interest.

• Though the dates, times and locations haven't been set in stone yet, the school board is planning on hosting several meetings to inform voters about the proposed referendum.

As of Monday's board meeting, only one was set -- on Oct. 9 at 7 p.m. in Height of Land's town hall -- but the remainder will be scheduled in the next week or so. There will be meetings in Vergas, Frazee, Shell Lake town hall, Wolf Lake and Toad Lake town hall.

Cheney said he and the board are open to giving presentations for other groups as well.

The district is asking for a $700-per-pupil referendum on the November ballot. The district taxpayers are currently paying on a $1,000 per pupil referendum.

There will also be e-mail and phone mailboxes for people to leave questions between now and the vote.

Follow Pippi Mayfield on Twitter at @PippiMayfield.