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Local

Geneva library gets good rating for bond sale

GENEVA – Moody’s Investors Service announced it has assigned an initial Aa2 rating to the Geneva Public Library District to issue $9.5 million in general obligation library bonds to construct a new library at 210 S. Sixth St. in Geneva, officials announced in a news release.

The first bond sale will be issued July 20 and will cover site preparation, building construction costs, architectural design fees, construction management fees, technology infrastructure and furnishings for the new building, the release stated.

The total cost of the new library project is $21.8 million, the release stated.

The second sale will occur at a future date.

“We are pleased to receive a positive bond rating that reflects our fiscal due diligence and financial stability,” library Board President Bob Shiffler stated in the release.

The Aa2 rating reflects the district’s healthy financial operations with sizable reserves, a large tax base with above average socioeconomic indices, an average pension burden and a debt burden that will be elevated compared with revenues, once all authorized debt has been issued, the release stated.

The library will use $300,000 from existing reserves, and the remainder of the cost will be paid for with bonds that will be issued in two separate sales, the release stated.

The bonds will have a maximum maturity of 20 years. The estimated real estate tax increase for a home with a market value of $300,000 is $98 to $99 per year, or about $8.25 per month, the release stated.

“We are excited to have this opportunity to provide our community with a facility that will provide expanded library service for all ages and stages of life,” Shiffler stated in the release.

“These services include additional space for collections; a computer/technology lab; spaces to create and learn new skills like robotics, book publishing, cooking and crafts; imaginative play space; parent networking opportunities; meeting, study and function rooms – and on-site parking,” Shiffler stated in the release.

Architectural firm StudioGC will oversee design of the 57,000-square-foot library and is seeking community feedback as part of the planning process, the release stated.

There were two community workshops in June to discuss plans for the new building. The third and last community workshop is scheduled for 7 p.m. July 19 at the library building at 127 James St. in Geneva, the release stated.

The final design will also undergo review by the Geneva Historic Preservation Commission, Plan Commission and City Council, the release stated.

The goal is to start construction of a new building in spring 2018, with a prospective opening date in mid-year 2019, the release stated.

To follow plans for the new library, visit www.gpldnewbuilding.org or email Board@gpld.org.

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