School savings

One key advantage of the $40 million bond issue approved by Cape Girardeau School District voters in April was timing. Interest rates are at historic lows. Competition among eager contractors helps keep construction bids low.

The Cape Girardeau district and four other school districts in Southeast Missouri will see additional savings as a result of state and federal incentives that are intended to create jobs and stimulate the economy.

This will mean savings of millions of dollars in interest costs for the districts. Fewer local tax dollars will be spent on projects in the affected districts. And, as in Cape Girardeau, bonds issued to cover the costs of the projects will be paid off sooner.

The Cape Girardeau bond issue is earmarked for renovations and other improvements to all of the district's schools, as well as replacement of Franklin Elementary School.

There probably hasn't ever been such a good time as now, from the standpoint of taxpayer-supported major projects, to borrow money through bond issues. School districts that have received the support of voters for needed construction, repairs and upgrades are in line to get the biggest bang for the bucks they are authorized to spend.