TV Segment

News Clip – Bank of Utica Helps City

Video Transcript

Good evening everybody. An eleventh hour lifeline from a hometown bank could be some good news for the City of Utica. This is all happening within the last few minutes or so. News Channel Two’s Joleen Ferris is live from Utica City Hall where a meeting just wrapped up – Joleen, good evening.

Thank you, Kristen. The City Council met today because on Friday you might remember they approved a short term loan for five million dollars in order to make their payroll. Today they were going to agree to up that amount to ten million dollars in order to pay the Utica City School District five million dollars in school taxes they collected. Well as the meeting of the City Council was about to start, the City Comptroller came in, sort of ushered the Mayor out, had a cell phone to his ear, and now we’re going to find out why. City Comptroller Mike Seminar is with us now. Apparently there is what could be good news from Bank of Utica. Tell us what’s happening.

I just received a phone call from Mr. Sinnott from Bank of Utica, that is very much interested in helping the City of Utica out and he will front the money for ten million dollars if need be, ah to help the city out at a very, very favorable interest rate that we’re are going to be negotiating. Um, it was just stunning news uh that he wanted to do this. He knows the plight that the City of Utica is in. Uh, Bank of Utica along with Adirondack Bank have also stepped up and bought refunding bonds so he wanted to help out in the best way he can. He called me; uh I was standing here with the Mayor, uh, gave us some favorable news so uh it’s moving forward nicely but just, just to have local uh participation, it’s really, want to be a part of helping out the city, I think is just outstanding.

Again, why is this good news? Because people might be thinking, you would have got the loan anyway. But I guess there was concern about the ability to get a ten million dollar short term loan.

A ten million dollar issuance is a big issue for a lot of the local banks around the area and naturally we try to deal with them and we’ve been on the phone ah for two days now trying to ah see what we can sell out there what bank can get a million dollars, what bank can take two million dollars uh um we had a major bank offer five million. The Bank of Utica had called the other day and said they would be interested and had just confirmed that today uh um with the mayor standing next to me and uh we take it as just wonderful news for, for the spirit, for the intent of doing what Bank of Utica wants to do.

Very good. Thank you for your time which we know these days is quite precious. Comptroller Michael Seminar thanks. So again, um an offer from the Bank of Utica, the concern was, they were getting calls from banks willing to help them out in terms of a short term loan, maybe up to five million dollars but, getting that short term loan for ten million was a concern but now they know the Bank of Utica is willing to step up to the plate and what we’re told is going to be a lower interest rate than they would’ve received from many other financial institutions. The crazy thing, they plan to have this money in hand, at least five million in time for city payroll this Friday. Back to you.

And as we know, the budget of course due tomorrow or supposed to be due tomorrow I should say, uh Joleen, what does this eleventh hour deal mean for the legislation that was being discussed tonight or was that off the table based on everything happening all at once?

Yes, well that was put into committee tonight, they couldn’t vote on it tonight anyway, that’ll come out at the next council meeting, I believe March seventh but, that’s a total separate issue, what they wanna do is sort of segregate the city, the school tax money so that the city can’t use that, not a good idea according to the comptroller could tie our hands and force us to take out more of these revenue anticipation notes but that’s a whole other discussion. Right now the big news is that the Bank of Utica apparently is going to give them that money at a lower interest rate than they would have received. Still not clear exactly how much they will need. They’re meeting with state representatives on Monday to see if they can get the state to sort of advance any of their aid that’s coming at the end of March.

Alright, Joleen Ferris, live from Utica City Hall with that uh breaking news if you will. Thanks Joleen.