Genoa Township recently earned a “AAA” credit rating from Standard & Poors Global Ratings. This will allow the township to issue bonds to finance the construction of the new police station at a lower interest rate to save on the borrowing costs.
“Of the 680 entities rated in Ohio, 41 have received the highest possible credit rating and Genoa is one of just three townships earning the distinction,” states Genoa Township Fiscal Officer Patrick Myers in a news release. “I am pleased that Standard & Poors has recognized the township’s prudent fiscal management in this way.”
“Genoa is an affluent, residential community that benefits from access to the larger Columbus area economy, supporting growth,” states the S&P Summary. “Since property taxes generate more than 80% of operating revenue, we expect Genoa’s economic growth; history of strong voter support; and, what we consider, good financial management practices under our Financial Management Assessment (FMA) methodology will allow management to maintain overall strong finances during the next few fiscal years.”
Genoa residents passed a .8-mill property tax bond levy for the new police facility on Nov. 6, 2018. The current police station is from the 1970s and is in poor condition. The new station will be built across the street from the present station, on the northwest corner of Big Walnut Road and state Route 3. The site, acquired by the township, was a former American Legion hall that became a safety concern. In recent months, the building was demolished and abated for asbestos. The Genoa Township Maintenance Department has also helped clear the site for construction.
On Feb. 21, the Genoa Township Board of Trustees approved the design and budget for the station by a 2-1 vote. The project will go out to bid this summer, with groundbreaking and construction to start this October. The possible opening date would be November 2020.
“After much research, discussion, and prioritization, the size of the new facility is planned to be 16,387 square feet (a 11% reduction from the original proposal of 18,298 square feet),” states the township website. “The original estimate to build, furnish, and equip the new facility was $6,837,400, not including the purchase of the land, which was about $497,000. Finally, the Police Department’s existing capital fund would pay some of the costs for furniture, equipment, and other ‘soft costs,’ with a minimum amount of $500,000. As plans were refined, the project is currently (2/21/2019) under-budget at $6,831,000, now including the cost of the land (where it had previously been accounted for as a separate cost). $580,300 will be spent from the Police Department’s existing levy funds to pay for ‘soft costs.’”
On April 30, residents Larry and Julie King donated a new flag pole and flag for the police station entrance.
Now that the credit rating has been secured, the township selected RW Baird & Company as the underwriter to market and sell the $7,000,000 in bonds to the public. Last week, the financial advisor began selling Genoa Township Police Station bonds to township residents for a $5,000 minimum purchase; and as of today, people outside the township may purchase bonds. For more information, contact Baird Director Mike Burns by email at [email protected] or call 614-629-6967.
In the township newsletter, Trustee Connie Goodman wrote on May 1, “Many thanks to voters for their support of this levy and to all who have worked so hard to design the new building to be right-sized and within the amount of the levy passed.”
For more information, visit www.GenoaTwp.com/PoliceStation.
Gary Budzak may be reached at 740-413-0906 or on Twitter @GaryBudzak.