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South Hills

West Jefferson Hills leaders borrow $6.7M as part of new high school

| Tuesday, July 24, 2018, 11:42 a.m.

The West Jefferson Hills School District has borrowed $6.7 million as part of the final bond issuance for the new Thomas Jefferson High School.

In all, over a six year time period, the district borrowed nearly $92.6 million to fund the new 300,000 square foot school being built on 161 acres off of Old Clairton Road. The new Thomas Jefferson High School is set to open sometime during the 2018-19 school year.

Board members on June 26 agreed to the final borrowing. The bond sale took place Wednesday.

“We’ve done good with our rates,” said Tracy Harris, director of finance.

She credited this to the district’s “good credit rating” which Moody’s has rated an Aa2.

Over the last six years, the district has borrowed in increments of $9.9 million, $9.995 million, $9.835 million, $30 million, $26.105 million and $6.735 million.

Last year, the district’s bond issuance came right after Brexit, and Harris said that was the lowest rate on all of the bonds, something they won’t likely see again.

The district’s annual debt service payment is nearly $5.8 million, which also includes prior debts.

The district will be paying back the larger bonds through 2045. This year’s borrowing is for 27 years.

Stephanie Hacke is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.

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