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Local Bid to Save Lee County Money

Lee County is once again reaping the benefits of local banking.

Pilot Grove Savings Bank -- which is based in northern Lee County –  offered a 2.10% interest rate on a ten-year loan of up to $510,000 so the county can build a new home for the Conservation Department.

The Board of Supervisors this week accepted the bank's offer, which was the lowest interest rate of the five submitted.

The county expects to save thousands of dollars over the life of the loan because it’s working with a local bank.

A crucial factor in the county's decision to borrow the money is the limited impact on taxpayers, and this bid makes that a reality.

A representative of the county's bond counsel told supervisors that the owner of a $100,000 home would pay about $2.50/year in additional taxes, though the figure could change if there is an increase in the county's total valuation.

A formal contract must still be drawn up between the county and bank.

The money should be available next month.

The vote to work with Pilot Grove Savings Bank was 4-1.  Supervisor Gary Folluo, who cast the lone no vote, has opposed everything involving construction of a new building for the Conservation Department.

This is not the first time the county has worked with Pilot Grove Savings Bank.  The business offered to loan the county up to $650,000 just last summer to renovate a portion of the Lee County Jail.  The ten-year loan carried a 2.0% interest rate and could be paid back after five years with no penalty.

Pilot Grove submitted the only bid for that project.

Jason Parrott is a former reporter at Tri States Public Radio.