UPDATE: District Board Approves New Bond Offering, Golf Cart Rules
Published on Wednesday, 06 June 2012 21:07
A new offering of long-term bonds by the Ave Maria Stewardship Community District got final approval Wednesday, resetting the clock that was ticking down to November when about $26 million in short-term bonds was becoming due.
The new $29.1 million in 30-year bonds, paying interest of 6.7 percent, replace short-term bonds that were about half of the debt the district incurred to build infrastructure such as major roadways in Ave Maria, stormwater drainage, sewers and landscaping. The other half of the debt was originally financed as 30-year bonds and is unaffected by the new offering.
Current Ave Maria property owners, and all other homeowners who are part of the first 2,500 residences sold in the town, pay interest on the original 30-year bonds as part of annual non ad valorum assessments, which will be unchanged.
Interest on the new bonds will be paid be paid by owners of the as-yet undeveloped land on which the next 2,500 homes will be built, and eventually by the owners of homes built on that land. The annual assessments for these homeowners will be somewhat higher than what is paid by the first 2,500 homeowners.
The entire $29.1-million offering was taken by a single purchaser, Nuveen Investments, said the underwriter, Kevin Mulshine of MBS Capital Markets. Nuveen, he said, had been an "aggressive purchaser" of Ave Maria's bonds in the secondary market.
"This is the only raw land financing deal done in recent years," Mr. Mulshine said, "because the developers had such a strong record of handling the debt."
The board also passed a formal resolution approving regulations for the operation of golf carts in Ave Maria. The regulations, which set the minimum age for operating a golf cart at 14 and stipulate among other rules that carts must be registered, have specific safety equipment, are properly insured, and can't be driven or parked on sidewalks, have been published for many months but Barron Collier VP Tom Sansbury said that a formal resolution was requested by the Collier County Sheriff's Office so that deputies would be able to enforce them.
Deputies were present at the meeting and will begin enforcing the regulations immediately.
The regulations are available for review by clicking here.
The next meeting of the district board is expected to be in August.