“It was an awful time to borrow money,” Huddleson said.
The repayment process, which the county approved on Tuesday, lowered the interest rate from 8% to 3.85%, which translates to an annual savings of $100,000 and about $1.5 million saved. over the life of the bond.
“In order to refinance the bonds, the current bonds are redeemed earlier. The current owners of the high-interest bonds are now out of business. The county is reissuing the bond at a lower interest rate and new investors are buying the bonds at the current public rate,” explained Alan Schaeffer, outside counsel for Olshan Properties. Schaeffer and his colleague David Montgomery represented Olshan, owner of the Greene, during the reimbursement process.
With lower debt repayment, developments like the Greene can attract new tenants and retain existing tenants by having more flexibility in rents and investing in improved public amenities, Schaeffer said. This means filling empty storefronts, more choices for consumers, and more revenue for Greene County through sales tax.
“It’s just economics,” County Treasurer Kraig Hagler said. “We’re cutting the Greene’s expenses and in turn they can do whatever they want with those savings, whether that’s paving the parking lot, adding landscaping, anything to make it more attractive to tenants.”