OB bond issue includes $50 million for new school system

OB bond issue includes $50 million for new school system
By JohnMullen
The city of Orange Beach is poised to release two bond issues worth a combined $75 million with $50 million a “general obligations school warrant,” according to the council’s May 17 agenda.
Also, during the meeting, the council will discuss awarding a bid to John G. Walton Construction for Canal Road improvements from State Route 161 to Wilson Boulevard for $7.3 million.
There will be a first reading and public hearing on each of the bond issues during the regular council session. A work session will follow where the Canal Road project will be discussed.
With the first bond issue of $50 million, the city seeks to “to acquire, provide, construct, and equip public school facilities, or school houses” the ordinance states. The city will draw on the money as needs arise.
“The bulk of the $50 million covers the payment to Baldwin County Board of Education for the current school assets and debt,” City Administrator Ken Grimes said..
With the second $25 million, the ordinance states the money was be used, also on an as-needed basis, for capital projects in Orange Beach.
According to Investopedia.com “A general obligation bond (GO bond) is a municipal bond backed solely by the credit and taxing power of the issuing jurisdiction rather than the revenue from a given project. General obligation bonds are issued with the belief that a municipality will be able to repay its debt obligation through taxation or revenue from projects. No assets are used as collateral.”
Canal Road will be widened to three lanes along that stretch with a roundabout in the area of the library to accommodate customers headed to Doc’s Seafood Shack and Oyster Bar. Included in the project is a 10-foot-wide intermodal path from State Route 161 to Wilson Boulevard and eventually all the way to Bear Point. This project will be funded mostly by RESTORE Act money.
During the regular session, council will addressed:
• Approving a liquor license for Dick’s Last Resort going into the former Toby Keith Space at The Wharf. Inside the 16,000-square-foot space will be the Cat’s Meow karaoke bar.
• A resolution authorizing execution of a professional services agreement with J. F. Morris Performance for theater performance direction for “Clue on Stage.”
• A resolution authorizing the purchase of a 2022 Tahoe four-wheel drive SUV for the fire department from state bid in the amount of $37,944.
• Consider hiring Decision Resources for $30,000 to “provide a report regarding issues pertaining to the pending separation agreement of the Orange Beach City Board of Education from the Baldwin County Board of Education. After having reviewed the agreement, the City Council has determined that the “provisions are in the best interest of the City of Orange Beach,” according to the resolution.
• A resolution authorizing execution of a reciprocal agreement to exchange information with the State of Alabama Department of Revenue to mirror some recent changes in the agreement passed by the state legislature.
• A resolution to purchase two replacement spare pumps for the utilities department, a 35-horsepower for $45,436 and a 45-horsepower for $43,351 from Jim House and Associates.
• A public hearing and first reading of a change in the city’s business code to clarify use of public property as a place of business.
• A public hearing and first reading for an ordinance authorizing the lease of the Medical Arts Building for $10,000 a month with a $10,000 security deposit. The tenant will be responsible for repairs to the heating and cooling system up to $2,000 and the city will pay any cost above that amount.
During work session, council addressed:
• A resolution adopting rental policies and procedures and establishing fees for the Wind and Water Learning Center on Wolf Bay near the library.
• A resolution authorizing a contract with Watermark Design Group to provide design, bid, and construction administration services for roof replacement at Fire Station No. 1 following the April 10, 2021, hailstorm in an amount not to exceed $27,600.
• Setting public hearings for the site plan for two new towers of Phoenix Key and a planned unit development modification in the Parks Edge subdivision. The suggested date was June 7.

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