9 Investigates: Orlando to incur $106M in debt

After raising taxes by nearly 18 percent, the city of Orlando is about to incur more debt.

On Monday, the city council is set to approve taking on $106 million in debt, to pay, in part, to  move the Orlando Police Station and make way for the Magic’s entertainment complex.

“We’re going to do energy efficiency measures and construct the police station. We’re going to pay for that debt with savings generated from the capital construction related to the energy efficiency measures,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer.

“There were predictions similar to this for the infamous Geico Garage. It was all going to get paid for, now we find out that they have to dip into reserves to pay for the Geico Garage,” Head said.

Fifty-million-dollars of the debt is to make way for the Magic’s new sports and entertainment complex, by moving OPD’s headquarters and by moving a fire station for a soccer stadium.

Thirty-million-dollars will go to refund older debt at a lower interest rate, and another $17 million will go to energy efficiency projects.

Those are the projects the mayor contends will save money by making the city more energy efficient, so it will eventually pay for the $106 million in bonds.

Some taxpayers, like Doug Head, leader of County Watch, don’t buy it.



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