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VVUHSD receives cash, criticism
District gets $18 million TRAN; also issued $37 million in CABs
SAN BERNARDINO • The Victor Valley Union High School District has successfully obtained money to help it stay afloat — along with a bit of criticism from a county official.
In January, the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a tax revenue anticipation note (TRAN) on behalf of the district. The $18 million TRAN is essentially a loan that allows the district continue operations until deferred state funding is received.
A Wednesday press release from county auditor-controller’s office states that the district also issued $37 million of general obligation capital appreciation bonds (CABs) that were needed to pay off bond anticipation notes issued in 2010.
“If Victor Valley had not issued the bond anticipation notes in 2010, they would not be in this difficult situation,” Auditor-Controller/Treasurer/Tax Collector Larry Walker said in the release.
According to the release, Walker has repeatedly stated his opposition to bond anticipation notes and CAB financing, contending that the district’s choices were “ill-advised” and the bonds were “issued by the district without the oversight and approval of either the County Treasurer or County Superintendent of Schools.”
While Walker stated that the district’s decision to issue the $37 million of CABs was “not our preference,” he also noted that “the district was left with very few options to avoid insolvency.”
The district chose to issue the CABs under a government code section that allows them to do so without the oversight and approval of the county treasurer.
“We are pleased we were able to assist (VVUHSD) with the issuance of this TRAN and improve the financing outcome for the students, school district and taxpayers,” Walker wrote. “They were in a very tough spot which required the district to make some very difficult choices. ... Going forward, I encourage the district to manage their debt portfolio in a conservative manner and to look for opportunities to refinance the CABs when further cost savings are achievable.”
Lynnea Lombardo may be reached at (760) 951-6232 or at LLombardo@VVDailyPress.com.
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