Written by Miami Today on November 5, 2009
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TRANSIT SUMMIT II: After Miami-Dade commissioners at a transit summit this time last year apologized for overpromising the voter-approved half-percent sales surtax for transportation projects, they’re calling for an encore this year. The goal this go-round is to update residents on transit progress, explain "what we’re doing in terms of trying to live within our means," and talk about future projects, Assistant County Manager Ysela Llort said at a commission meeting Tuesday. The summit will probably be 5-8 p.m. Nov. 18 in the county commission chambers, Commissioner Barbara Jordan said. Residents will be free to e-mail or call in with questions or comments if they can’t attend. She plans to first present the information Ms. Llort mentioned, have some commission discussion, then open the floor to the public for "as much time as possible."
BONDS AWAY: Miami-Dade commissioners at a budget committee Monday are to be asked to authorize issuing up to $600 million in aviation revenue bonds to refinance outstanding aviation commercial paper notes issued to fund the aviation department’s capital improvement program, to reimburse the county for the program’s costs and to fund a reserve account deposit. Aviation revenues are to pay the interest. Based on a 32-year amortization, the county estimates debt service to hit $47 million a year beginning in fiscal 2019.
DOUBLE-BARRELED BONDS: Also on Monday’s agenda: issuing up to $247.5 million in "double-barreled" aviation bonds to finance various facility improvements at county airports and retire some commercial paper notes issued in the past for prior improvements. They’re called "double-barreled" because they’re secured by both aviation revenues and by "the full faith, credit and taxing power (general obligation pledge) of the county," the legislation says. But airport revenues are "anticipated" to cover principal and interest without burdening the county’s debt service millage, it says. "This "double-barreled’ concept allows the aviation department to benefit from the higher credit rating of the county’s general obligation pledge with the result of lowering the interest cost on the bonds." Debt service is projected to be $16.53 million a year for about 32 years.
PROPERTY TAX PROJECTIONS: Miami-Dade could have an idea of the 2010 tax roll as early as January. Commissioners on the county’s Budget, Planning and Sustainability Committee voted last week to require that the property appraiser give the commission at the end of January a report detailing tax roll estimates. The full commission is to vote Nov. 17.
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