Bond committee discusses procedures, why last one didn’t pass

first_img Bond committee discusses procedures, why last one didn’t pass Pinterest Ground rules and a scope of work were set for the new Ector County Independent School District Bond Advisory Committee that met Monday in the George H.W. Bush New Tech Odessa cafeteria.TransCend4, the firm hired by ECISD to guide the committee through the process, also asked people why they thought the November 2017 bond issue failed and what’s different this time. About 72 people attended the meeting and 100 were invited. The committee includes some of the same people as the last one with some new additions.The bond is now proposed for May 2019, giving the committee more time to go over the information and make decisions. Superintendent Tom Crowe said a bond and tax ratification election will be held separately with the TRE coming first.“We’re starting from scratch,” Crowe said. “… We are making this a community conversation.”In remarks before the meeting started, ECISD Board of Trustees President Carol Gregg said the schools are overcrowded. The last time, the district did not give the community time to buy into the bond and TRE.She added that Ector County residents are not used to a downturn where people don’t leave. For years, Gregg said the student population stayed the same and now it’s increasing and continues to grow with more than 32,000 students.Crowe said the district will be very clear in its communications, which was an issue last time.Michelle Hughes from TransCend4, said all the information from meetings will be posted on the district website.Hughes told the committee to be respectful but that doesn’t mean they can’t express themselves.Some of the reasons why the group said the 2017 bond failed were: All the taxing entities raising their tax rates and/or going for specific levies. The district had two items that would raise people’s taxing and all the other entities seemed to be asking for more money, as well, which created mutually assured destruction, committee member Lorraine Perryman said. Perryman said the community also felt that the priorities were predecided; there continues to be a teacher shortage, but more facilities would have been built and there was a question of where more teachers would come from; adding more high schools also was an issue and ninth-grade centers should possibly have been considered. Perryman said presenting the bond in proposition may have given it a better chance to pass. Cruz Castillo, an architect who was on the previous bond advisory committee, said there was no teacher buy-in last time. Too little time to review information before the bond election. Castillo said he was grateful for the extra time.A lot of complications with marketing; not explaining the needs clearly; misperception of the information and misunderstanding of the presentation of the information.Overcrowding was not addressed properly.Asking for two high schools; issues with sports; not selling that properly; and people being unaware of the need for facilities.The community didn’t understand how it was going to affect them and the students. A bad plan that cost too much money and question marks about finances.Not enough accurate communication.Karen Howard-Winters, who was on the last bond advisory committee, said everything was pre-packaged last time and there was no way to separate out the items. She said what contributed to the defeat was the high cost and bad timing.Renee Henderson Earls, President/CEO of the Odessa Chamber of Commerce, who also was on the bond advisory committee last time, said this effort must be driven by the community.Virgil Trower, a new member, said something has to be done to get voters out because with higher turnout it stands more of a chance of passing.What has changed is the boom has made people more aware of the needs and that there is more of a sense of urgency because there are more students coming in.Perryman said some people at her table thought nothing had changed, but some who were more optimistic said the district was humbled and ready to do things differently. Maybe with the boom, she said, people would see the urgency for more facilities.Hughes said districts usually determine needs based on demographics, where the growth is and a long-range facilities plan that shows when a roof is going to fail, for example.Conrad Turner, who was on the last bond advisory committee, said work on the 2012 bond was completed in February and six months later people were voting on another one.Ector Middle School, Noel and Pease elementary schools in their fifth year of improvement required status under state accountability standards. If the campuses don’t come off the list, they will face closure or the Texas Education Commissioner will appoint a board of managers over the whole district.Turner noted this and asked if this bond fails, “do we deserve better leadership?”Perryman, who has been a fan and critic of ECISD, said with the new boom and severely overcrowded schools that more facilities are desperately needed.“… But we need to build trust and faith in our school district to positively respond at the ballot box for what those real needs are,” Perryman said. “… I want to us to stay child centered as we approach this, that everything we do is focused on the children and the community and meeting their needs. As long as we stay focused on the kids, then I think we’ll go in the right direction and that will remove a lot of the peripheral debate.”Interim Odessa City Manager Michael Marrero was not part of the original process.“But tonight’s process is very promising because it really is well structured. The hope is that we get all the information that we need (so) we can then make a good recommendation to the school board,” Marrero said.Marrero added that it’s good to get a sense of what individuals think in terms of what they perceive to be the problems with the initial bond and look at those. People may differ on why it worked or didn’t work.“I think everybody’s input is valuable and shouldn’t be discounted,” Marrero said.So each one should be considered and analyzed as the process moves forward.Crowe said he liked that more people were involved in the bond committee this time and that some of the old members were back and that there were new people with fresh eyes.“I’m liking where we’re heading and Michelle’s got a lot of experience and a mature approach, so I’m anxious to see her working with everybody,” Crowe added.More InformationIn November 2017, a $291,172,291 bond and a tax ratification election failed.Some 7,186 people voted in the election. The bond failed with 61.81 percent, or 4,442 people, voting against it and 38.19 percent, or 2,744 people voting for it. The 2017 bond included a new comprehensive high school; conversion of Ector Middle School to a high school; a new middle school to replace Ector; a district wide fiber network; lifecycle improvements; fire and safety upgrades; secure front entries at each campus; Permian High School locker room renovation; Odessa High School weight room upgrades and expansion; and renovation of restrooms at Ratliff Stadium.A tax ratification election also was voted on in November 2017 with a total of 7,182 votes. Close to 40 percent, or 2870 people, voted for the tax ratification election and just over 60 percent, or 4,312 people, voted against it. Facebook WhatsApp Local News WhatsApp Pinterest Facebook Twitter Previous articleSuspect charged in fatal 2013 shootingNext articleConcert’s partial proceeds goes to H.O.T. admin Twitter By admin – April 9, 2018 last_img read more


PACE Financing Risks—A Fresh Look

first_img Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago David Wharton, Managing Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, where he received his B.A. in English and minored in Journalism. Wharton has over 16 years’ experience in journalism and previously worked at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm, as Associate Content Editor, focusing on producing media content related to tax and accounting principles and government rules and regulations for accounting professionals. Wharton has an extensive and diversified portfolio of freelance material, with published contributions in both online and print media publications. Wharton and his family currently reside in Arlington, Texas. He can be reached at [email protected] Sign up for DS News Daily Previous: Top 3 Housing Trends Next: Will Wage Growth Bring Relief to Homebuyers? Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago PACE Financing Risks—A Fresh Look Tagged with: ABS asset-backed securities green homes PACE renewable energy  Print This Post ABS asset-backed securities green homes PACE renewable energy 2018-07-05 David Wharton July 5, 2018 12,052 Views Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago About Author: David Whartoncenter_img Related Articles Home / Daily Dose / PACE Financing Risks—A Fresh Look Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Share 100Save First introduced in California in 2014, Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing has since allowed more than 220,000 homeowners to make “green” improvements to their properties. PACE allows property owners to secure all the upfront financing they need, then pay that off over terms of up to 30 years at a fixed interest rate. However, PACE financing has been occasionally controversial within the industry, and now a new analysis from Kroll Bond Rating Agency has examined whether those concerns were justified.Unlike traditional mortgage loans, PACE financing doesn’t require a down payment or even a monthly payment. Instead, the loans are repaid through an addition to the home’s property taxes over time. The PACE assessment contract also follows the property itself, rather than the property owner—in the event the property is sold, the new owner would then inherit the responsibility to repay via those property taxes, as well as the risk of a tax foreclosure if they fall behind. PACE also does not involve the same underwriting standards as traditional mortgage loans, with underwriting focused primarily on the value of the property and with the relevant state and local governments having discretion when it comes to setting those standards. Moreover, “the lien associated with a PACE assessment has priority over any lien(s) held by any mortgagor(s).”However, the PACE industry has experienced several positive developments over the past decade, and concerns about foreclosures on properties with PACE assessments “may be overstated,” according to Kroll’s report. Based on a review of PACE assessments in California—the largest market for PACE financing—Kroll found Kroll “no significant difference” between property-tax delinquency rates for PACE and non-PACE homes.“We anticipate that in a home foreclosure with a mortgage lender that all taxes in arrears, including the PACE assessment, would be fully repaid,” the Kroll report states. “Almost all counties in the three states included in PACE securitizations thus far prohibit partial payments of real estate taxes, preventing selective defaults on PACE assessments under existing standards.”Furthermore, Kroll reports that PACE has spurred the adoption of underwriting policies that hinge upon the borrower’s ability to repay. “Greater focus on the consumer’s ability to pay and improving consumer protection practices are also viewed as positive developments for the industry,” the report states.Kroll also notes that “public residential PACE asset-backed securities issuances have exhibited higher than expected prepayment rates.” The conditional prepayment rates (CPRs) on residential PACE ABS transactions “have ranged from 10.1 percent to 18.9 percent, which is generally in line with CPRs for FHFA or Fannie Mae-backed residential mortgage-backed securities,” the report reads. “KBRA views the relatively higher than anticipated CPRs as a credit positive since higher CPRs have resulted in a faster amortization profile and shorter weighted average life of the PACE ABS transactions, thereby reducing ‘tail risk’ for these long-term transactions.”“Further, as prepayments reduce the overall pool size, liquidity reserve accounts are available to cover a greater portion of the remaining lien delinquencies,” the report continues.To read Kroll Bond Rating Agency’s full report on PACE financing, click here. To read more about the past and future of PACE financing, click here. in Daily Dose, Featured, Foreclosure, Journal, Market Studies, News Subscribe The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days agolast_img read more


Unmanned Cargo Ship Development Alliance Launched in Shanghai

first_imgIndustry bodies in China, led by HNA Technology Logistics Group and China Classification Society (CSS), have established what is now known as the unmanned cargo ship development alliance.Supported by experts from the ABS, DNV GL, Chinese ship and Marine Engineering Design Institute, Shanghai Marine Diesel Engine Research Institute, among others, the alliance is expected to have a profound impact on the industry.According to Li Weijian, Vice Chairman of HNA Technology Logistics Group, unmanned cargo transport development alliance is not only the organizer and leader of future shipping development, but founder and facilitator of technical product rules.CSS said that it will work together with the industry to carry out unmanned cargo transport and related technology research, establish unmanned ship standard, promote the revision of the regulations, and provide assessment, verification and inspection services for the industry.The alliance intends to become a pioneer in the adaptation of shipping and shipbuilding industry to the rapid change of market and technology, and believes that there will be broad prospects for the application of the outcome.The alliance plans to invite more scientific and technical research institutions, industry and end-users to participate, and develop cooperation in the areas of unmanned cargo transport development, ship manufacturing and operation.It is expected that the first unmanned cargo ship would be delivered in 2021, becoming the pioneer for the future shipping mode.last_img read more


Greensburg Ranked On Safest Cities List

first_imgGREENSBURG – A new survey by Movoto Real Estate has named Greensburg the eleventh safest city in Indiana.Rankings were based on places in Indiana with a population of 10,000 or more, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. The real estate group then gathered crime data reported to the FBI in 2012 and calculated crime rates per 100,000 residents.According to the website, Greensburg had 1,274 crimes per 100,000 residents in 2012. 990 were crimes against property and 284 were categorized as violent crime.The top 10 safest cities in Indiana were as follows:City of ZionsvilleCity of CarmelTown of FishersTown of St. JohnCity of JasperCity of Crown PointCity of WestfieldTown of BrownsburgTown of ChestertonTown of MunsterRanked number 11, Greensburg was the only Southeastern Indiana location included in the report of 62 Indiana cities.last_img read more