Having historically funded its capital needs on an entirely pay-as-you-go basis, Pinellas County Schools worked with Raymond James, whose global headquarters is located within the school district, to act as senior manager on its inaugural financing under a new Master Lease Program.
The eighth-largest school district in Florida and 27th-largest in the nation will use the $60.93 million issued in August 2017 to finance a replacement middle school, a replacement elementary school and a new administration building, classrooms and cafeteria at an existing career academy. The effort will revive existing facilities that were at least 40 to 50 years old.
The proximity of Raymond James’ headquarters afforded the District the unique opportunity to invite nearly 80 high school students, teachers and administrators from its Northeast High School Academy of Finance to attend the pricing of the Series 2017A Certificates. Students were able to monitor the pricing process live, tour the Fixed Income Trading Desk and interact with Raymond James underwriters and bankers as well as the District’s financial advisor and bond counsel.
As a result of a favorable market and a well-executed pre-marketing program, the pricing was extremely successful. Orders for the Series 2017A Certificates were received from 46 different accounts across the maturity spectrum. And the deal for a school district became a class of its own.