Property rates could decrease if bond vote passes

LITTLE ROCK, AR — The Central Arkansas Library System could soon turn a new page on capital improvements if voters say yes during a bond refinancing election Tuesday.

“This is a good time to refinance anything. It’s like refinancing your house,” said Central Arkansas Library System director Bobby Roberts

The vote would refinance bonds that were issued in 2004. Interest rates are low right now because of the poor economy and that’s why library directors say if passed, the vote will generate $21 million.

Leaders say the money would be used to buy more books, upgrade technology, and build a parking deck at the main library.

“The interest rates are down. These bonds that are outstanding are four and a half percent interest. If the voters approve it, that interest will drop to about two and a half percent,” said Roberts.

Property taxes would drop as well.

“If it passes, the change in the millage would take place in 2013 when (county leaders) set the new millage rates,” said Roberts.

The measure would also expand the McMath Library on John Barrow Road and purchase property for a future branch in West Little Rock.

The vote only affects voters in Little Rock because the bonds were only issued to be used within Little Rock city limits.

“We would also build an auditorium. We don’t have a big enough auditorium to do the kind of programming we would like to do. So we would like to build a 350-seat auditorium,” said Roberts.

Voting is Tuesday from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

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