Creativity with Measure I bonds saves some Santa Barbara County taxpayers nearly $6 million

Oct 8, 2014

Buildings on the Allan Hancock campus built with Measure I funds.
Credit Allan Hancock College

A refinancing move by the Allan Hancock College District is expected to save some Santa Barbara County taxpayers nearly $6 million in the years to come. 

Back in 2006, voters approved Measure I, a $180 million bond to pay for facility and technology improvements at Allan Hancock College. Last week, a portion of those bonds were resold at a better interest rate for taxpayers.

Elizabeth Miller is Hancock's Associate Superintendent, and says timing was the important factor with this deal. She and others with the college had been closely watching interest rates and realized a window had opened where the college could save $2 to 3 million dollars for taxpayers. In the end however, the move was postponed until a point where even more bonds were eligible for the transaction, extending the savings to nearly $6 million.

"We were very, very pleased," said Miller. "We did the sale last week and we actually had more offers than we had bonds to sell, which was also incredibly encouraging and reaffirmed our ability to do this."

Much of the Measure I projects have already been completed, including the new 68-acre Public Safety Training Complex on the Lompoc Valley Center. Still planned for the future are a fine arts building and a few other Measure I projects.

The Allan Hancock College District extends from Santa Maria to as far south as Goleta, and actually includes a sliver of San Luis Obispo and Ventura Counties in the Cuyama area of eastern Santa Barbara County.