Fulton County, Ga., is planning what its officials believe to be the first college savers bond program in Georgia.

"The Fulton County College Savings Bond Program provides the county with several great opportunities," said County Commissioner Nancy Boxill. "It allows Fulton residents, in many cases for the first time, to invest in high-quality municipal bonds. And it allows the county to save its taxpayers money by refinancing high interest-rate debt with relatively low-rate obligations."

County spokeswoman Edwina Palmer said, "Fulton County will be one of the first county governments in the country, and the first government of any kind in Georgia, to initiate such a program."

Palmer said Atlanta-based Ward & Associates and St. Louis-based A.G. Edwards & Sons have been chosen to run the books on the deal.

Richard Layton, the A.G. Edwards vice president of public finance at Atlanta, said yesterday that he expects a "ready market" for the debt in Fulton County. The county includes most of Atlanta.

Layton said the underwriters anticipate selling between $12 million and $15 million of the zero coupon college savers bonds in $1,000 denominations. He said this debt, which will mature in between five and 20 years, will be used to refund high-coupon GOs of Fulton County issued between 1983 and 1990.

The investment banker said that the issue has been tentatively scheduled for sale on Oct. 19 or 20.

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