September 21, 2012 in City

Wenatchee arena bond sale a success

Michelle Mcniel Wenatchee World

WENATCHEE – Investors on Thursday snatched up more than $48 million in bonds that will refinance the Town Toyota Center’s outstanding debt.

Wenatchee Mayor Frank Kuntz confirmed that all the bonds were “spoken for” within an hour and a half after they went on sale at 7 a.m.

The sale is expected to be completed by Sept. 28, and the arena’s nearly $42 million debt, which has been in default since last Dec. 1, will be paid off that day.

The debt will be refinanced for 30 years. The additional money is needed for reserves and other costs.

“This is a really, really huge deal for our city, financially,” Kuntz said. The city of Wenatchee guaranteed the arena’s current short-term debt, so the city may have been responsible for repaying the debt if it had not been refinanced.

Once investors spoke for all the bonds, Kuntz and Dustin Christensen, president of the arena’s board of directors, agreed to the purchase price.

Kuntz was waiting to sign the purchase agreement with bond underwriter Piper Jaffray. Jaffray will serve as the escrow agent that will then handle the sale of the bonds to investors.

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