Burlington, Vermont, issued $150.5 million in bonds to finance capital improvements, including for its school district.
The bonds mature between 2024 and 2043, yielding between 3% and 3.89%. They pay interest at 5%. The securities received a rating of Aa3 from Moody’s Investors Service.
“The Aa3 issuer rating reflects the city’s strength as a regional economic center with institutional presence and an economic growth rate that slightly trails the nation,” according to Moody’s.
The city will use the majority of bond proceeds, $130 million, to make improvements to its school district. Of that funding, $90 million will finance the construction of a new high school. An additional $5 million will fund city infrastructure projects.
The project comes after a period of geographic uncertainty for Burlington High School. In 2018, Burlington voters approved $70 million in bonds to renovate the high school, but an environmental review which found high levels of pollutants stalled the project. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the school district switched to virtual education. Since in-person classes resumed, they have been held at a vacant department store that was formerly a Macy’s.
Voters authorized $165 million in school building bonds last November. The school district expects the new high school to open in January 2026, with the lease at the department store scheduled to end in December 2025.
Burlington is the biggest city in Vermont, with a population of about 45,000. The bonds are general obligations of the city, backed by its full faith, credit, and taxing power.
BofA Securities, Inc served as lead underwriter on the issuance.