The Monroe County Board of Supervisors met March 9 and discussed refinancing bonds from the jail project with a Northland Securities representative.
According to the representative, interest rates hit a low near the beginning of the year and are now rising. He did not recommend the board refinance right now, since they currently have a low interest rate and he didn’t think the savings would be worth it. He did recommend the board hold a public hearing on refinancing and then wait to see if interest rates went down. If the public hearing had already been held, the board could quickly move to capitalize on lowered interest rates before they rebound.
The Northland representative said they usually recommend refinancing when an entity can save at least three percent of their money. Currently Monroe County would save about .64 percent with refinancing. The board said they would be holding a public hearing in the future and the Northland representative said he would contact the board if interest rates dropped to a good level to refinance.
Monroe County Attorney John Pabst spoke to the board about the county facing new costs related to guardianships. Pabst said the state of Iowa require that if a person is indigent and unable to pay for their guardianship fees the county is required to appoint an attorney for them and if the person cannot pay the fees for the guardianship, the county must pay them.
Pabst said he will require a judge to make a finding of indigence for each request before he will approve payments. Pabst said he thinks the bills are reasonable but that he fears costs to the county may balloon to $50,000 a year because of the state’s new requirements.
County Engineer Jeremiah Selby asked the board to extend the date that Secondary Roads employees could use their compensatory time from June to Oct. 31. Under the approved union contract the time must be used or paid out by the end of June. Selby requested the any time earned by July 1 could be used up to Oct. 31. Selby said the union had agreed to the change if it was approved. The board approved the request.
In other business:
• A transfer from LOST funds to make a payment on the jail bond was approved.
• A liquor license renewal for Albia Golf was approved.
• The board approved the annual weed notice to be printed in the paper.
• The board examined claims and approved them.
• The board performed a canvass of the special election held March 2 for the Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont School District voter approved PPEL. Albia saw 23 people vote with no absentee ballots. There were 10 yes votes and 13 no votes, although overall the measure passed. The board approved the canvass.