Olentangy Valley News

Moving money: Orange hopes to increase earnings

Investment change could double current interest income

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Orange Township trustees plan to vote at their Oct. 7 meeting to invest $5.9 million in government agency bonds , expected to make about $60,000 a year in interest earnings.

Doing that could nearly double what the township is making in its current investments.

Brian Carter of Fifth-Third Securities, a subsidiary of Fifth-Third Bank, explained at the trustees' meeting Monday, Sept. 16, that two-year government agency bonds currently earn about 1 percent annually.

Township Fiscal Officer Joel Spitzer recommended that the board take the money from six permanent improvement funds.

That $5.9 million is part of about $15 million invested in the past year in the state's Star Ohio Plus program. The township also has about $3 million invested in the state's Star Ohio program and about $900,000 in a checking account with the Delaware County Bank, Spitzer said.

In the second quarter of this year, the township made about $9,000 from those investments, which have lower interest rates than government agency bonds.

Carter, who has spoken previously to trustees, attended the meeting to discuss various investment options.

One option, involving going with government-brokered certificates of deposits, is a gray area that needs to be looked at further by the state regarding some possible legal issues, officials have said. Such CDs could have higher rates of investment return.

Carter told trustees that government agency bonds could be obtained through various means, including the Federal Home Loan Bank, the Federal Farm Credit Bank, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Trustees agreed that going with the government agency bonds makes the most sense.

 

Veterans memorial

Also Monday, Trustee Rob Quigley presented an update on a possible veterans memorial in the township.

He said he talked to the township park board, which agrees that a memorial could be put on vacant land adjacent to the old township hall at the northeast corner of South Old State and Orange roads. A memorial monument could be put there and the old hall could be used for displaying various items.

While the township has committed up to $5,000 toward the proposed project, donations would be sought to cover the bulk of the costs. A total cost has not been estimated.

Trustees Debbie Taranto and Lisa Knapp agreed that Quigley, who is a veteran, could start reaching out to schools and others in the community to get ideas from them about the memorial.

Quigley said after the meeting that he also wants to talk to veterans and to veterans' groups about the memorial. He presented a $100 check during the meeting to kick off donations for the memorial.

 

Leisure trail

In another matter at the meeting, trustees passed a resolution authorizing township officials to pursue negotiations and planning with the Army Corps of Engineers and Alum Creek State Park for a possible future multiuse leisure trail connection into the state park.

"Our goal is to get into Alum Creek Park," said township Park Director Beth Hugh. "The first step is for the board to say it's interested in this."

Hugh will work with the Corps of Engineers and the state park on such things as identifying a location for a trail that would lead into the playground and parking lot area near the dam at the park.

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