NJ local governments to save $2M through refinancing

New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust Chairman Robert A. Briant, Sr. announced the sale of more than $25.1 million in refunding bonds to refinance 19 environmental protection projects. Municipal, county, utilities authorities and private water utilities will save $1.96 million in finance charges on their infrastructure loans. "This sale marks the 13th time the Trust has sold bonds to refinance infrastructure projects in New Jersey," Chairman Briant said...

Jun 19th, 2008

• Environmental trust's bond sale to refinance 19 water infrastructure loans

TRENTON, NJ, June 12, 2008 -- New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust Chairman Robert A. Briant, Sr. announced the sale of more than $25.1 million in refunding bonds to refinance 19 environmental protection projects. Municipal, county, utilities authorities and private water utilities will save $1.96 million in finance charges on their infrastructure loans.

"This sale marks the 13th time the Trust has sold bonds to refinance infrastructure projects in New Jersey," Chairman Briant said. "With this sale, 19 borrowers will realize a substantial savings that will help keep costs down for taxpayers and ratepayers. Our low-interest loans have funded 680 projects in New Jersey, totaling more than $4.3 billion. These projects provide new or upgraded drinking water and wastewater treatment and conveyance pipes, open space preservation, stormwater controls and brownfield clean ups."

Moody's Investors Service, Standard & Poor's, and Fitch Ratings have each awarded these bonds their highest possible rating.

The winning bid was submitted by PNC Capital Markets LLC in a sale completed on June 3 in one series:
Series 2008A - $25.1 million: Interest Rate - 3.31%, Present Value Savings 3.83%

"Over the past 21 years, the Trust has saved municipalities more than $93 million by refinancing loans," said executive director Dennis Hart. "Unlike traditional lending institutions, we constantly monitor market conditions to assess when the time is right to refinance past loans. This practice strongly supports Governor Corzine's efforts to reduce local government costs by returning bond refunding savings to our borrowers."

The Financing Program's loans, which are 75 and 50 percent below market rates, provide substantial cost savings to municipalities and utility and sewerage authorities. To date, these loans have saved New Jersey taxpayers and ratepayers more than $1.8 billion in financing costs.

Created in August 1986, the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust is an independent state authority and the first program of its kind in the country. Working in partnership with the Department of Environmental Protection, the program combines interest-free loans from state revolving funds with market-rate loans from the sale of AAA-rated Trust bonds. This provides borrowers with a loan that is half the prevailing market rate. Projects that promote smart growth are eligible for loans that are one quarter of the market rate. Proceeds from last year's bond sale were combined with zero-percent state revolving funds to provide smart growth project loans at 1.06 percent and traditional project loans at 2.11 percent.

The Trust is preparing a 2008 Pooled Bond sale to take place on October 22, 2008. The proceeds from that sale will help finance environmental projects worth more than $705 million - the largest issue in the program's history. Over the past three years, the Trust and its partner the NJDEP, have financed over $1.5 billion in environmental infrastructure projects.

For more information about the Trust, visit www.njeit.org.

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