Submitted by Suanne Z. Thamm
Reporter – News Analyst
August 9, 2018 – 8:00 a.m.
The city of Fernandina Beach appears to be on its way to repair Hurricane Matthew damages to the city marina, if Tuesday’s events are any indication. The legal obstacle to proceeding with repairs was removed when the city received authorization from the Army Corps of Engineers to proceed. But other city actions provided additional hopeful news: approving a line of credit; finalizing contract with Fender Marine; establishing Marina Advisory Committee.
FBCC approves $6.6M line of credit for marina repairs
During the August 7, 2018 Regular Meeting of the Fernandina Beach City Commission (FBCC), commissioners voted unanimously to approve Resolution 2018-103, authorizing the issuance of a city line of credit in the principal amount of not to exceed $6.6M to reimburse and fund capital improvements to the city marina. The note is a limited obligation repayable from FEMA reimbursements and from non-ad valorem revenues. This means that the city will “never be required to levy ad valorem taxes or use the proceeds thereof to pay debt service on the Note or to make any other payments or to maintain or continue any of the activities of the Issuer which generate user service charges, regulatory fees or any other Non-Ad Valorem Revenues. The Note shall not constitute a lien on any property owned by or situated within the limits of the Issuer, except the Pledged Revenues. “
The line of credit has a 3-year term with a variable interest rate. The initial rate for draws against this line of credit is 2.2562 percent. Interest is only charged against funds drawn, and the note may be repaid at any time with no prepayment penalty.
The loan may be used for capital improvements, but not dredging, which is considered routing maintenance.
Branch Banking & Trust Company (BB&T) was selected as the lender following a solicitation of proposals via RFP 18-13 on May 25, 2018 for a Tax-Exempt, Bank Qualified Non Revolving Line of Credit. The City’s Financial Advisor developed the Request for Proposals and the City received four qualified proposals.
The firm of Bryant Miller Olive, P.A. served as the city’s advisor in developing this financial package.
Design/Build contract under review for finalization this month
City Attorney Tammi Bach announced at the FBCC meeting that she was working with Fender Marine to finalize contract terms for the design build work to repair the marina. She expects to have sign-offs from Fender Marine and the city’s insurance company within weeks.
FBCC solicits applications for Marina Advisory Board (MAB)
In a somewhat related matter, the FBCC considered appointments to the newly formed Marina Advisory Board, but declined to act until language in the enabling resolution is clarified to indicate that the maximum number of marina slip holders who may serve at any given time is four, leaving 3 of the seven slots available for the general public. The FBCC will amend the ordinance to so indicate at their September 4, 2018 meeting and appoint members.
Any city resident interested in serving on this board should download an application from the city website or contact the City Clerk’s Office at (904) 310-3115. The FBCC established a deadline for receipt of applications on August 24, 2018 at 5:00 p.m.