(Orange, Texas)

September 14, 2013

County seeks $4M loan

Dawn Burleigh
The Orange Leader

ORANGE — Orange County will start the new fiscal year with a $4 million loan.

Commissioners Court held a Special Called Session Friday morning to discuss the bids from First Financial Bank, formerly known as Orange Savings Bank and Wells Fargo.

Wells Fargo presented a bid for a drawdown loan, meaning the county would only pay interest on the amount actually used, while First Financial Bank presented a bid for the $4 million loan in one lump sum up front.

Either loan would still need to be approved by the Attorney General.

Due to the difference in the type of loan presented by each bank, the court will hold a special call meeting at 11 a.m. on Monday to allow both banks to present the loan again.

County Judge Carl Thibodeaux and Commissioner Pct. 1 David Dubose both said the court wanted to make sure they were comparing “apples to apples”.

First Financial Bank representative Joe Love told the courts the bank could guarantee a drawdown loan for the county with a 1.95% interest rate as they showed for the loan presenting the entire funds upfront.

Wells Fargo presented $12,000 in fees for the loan including the $4,000 bond fee, while First Financial Bank showed $9,000 not including the bond fee.

“The paperwork would still need to be overnighted to the Attorney General for approval,” Thibodeaux said. “Last year we caught heat for not looking at other banks.”

Each bank is to bring a proposal that the court can sign on Monday.