SPRINGFIELD, Mo. Springfield will borrow millions of dollars to improve the safety of the community.
Voters signed off on a property tax to cover the debt more than two years ago yet the money to pay it off hasn't been collected yet.
"If we didn't have bonding capacity we would have to wait until we had the funds already saved," said Director of Finance for Springfield, David Holtmann.
That would mean that flooding in parts of Springfield would still be out of control. City buildings will continue to deteriorate.
The fire department's resources and personnel will continue to be stretched thin.
"It would take an additional 2 to 3 years to be able to start those projects. We can fast track them currently with this bonding," he said.
A total of ten high priority projects that directly benefit the community are on the list of improvements.
"Out of the $18 million we have just over $6 million in fire station improvements, two new fire stations, one replacement, one new fire station. Those will be very substantial to our public safety efforts," he explained.
Since Springfield has a good credit rating, the final cost for borrowing a high principal amount, around $475,000.
"We're looking at a two to two and a half percent interest cost," said Holtmann.
The city has had these projects in the works for years.
Most, if not all of the plans and studies are complete.
"If we wait another 2 or 3 years just the increased cost of construction might exceed that at this point and time. It's kind of a balancing act in that regard," he said.
Delaying the projects will likely cost taxpayers even more.
"We will have a sale later this week of the bonds. As soon as we do we'll put these out to bid. It's very exciting."
Construction on the storm water and fire station projects could start later this year.