New Jersey Bond Sale Funds 67 Water Infrastructure Upgrades

Thursday, Jan 7, 2010  |  Updated 3:18 PM PDT
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New Jersey Bond Sale Funds 67 Water Infrastructure Upgrades

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TRENTON, New Jersey, October 31, 2008 (ENS) - Chairman of the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust Robert A. Briant, Sr. Thursday announced the sale of over $128.4 million in bonds to help finance 67 environmental protection projects worth more than $300 million across the state.

These projects will provide new or upgraded drinking water and wastewater treatment and conveyance systems as well open space preservation.

"Not only will this financing lead to an improved environment," said Briant, "but given the current economic situation the 10,000 to 11,000 jobs created by the construction of these projects is very important and fits in with Governor [Jon] Corzine's initiative to improve the economy by improving the infrastructure of New Jersey."

"Our goal is to keep costs as low as possible for those responsible for protecting New Jersey's water resources. Our AAA bond rating from Fitch Ratings, Moody's Investor Service and Standard & Poor's makes our loans a very safe alternative to traditional market-rate financing," Briant said.

"This high rating attracted eight bidders in the Series A bond sale," he said. The interest rate stands at 4.79 percent.

The largest borrower in this round of financing is Bergen County Utilities Authority, which will receive $30.5 million for the installation of relief sewers and force main improvements.

Camden County Municipal Utilities Authority will receive $24.5 million for construction of a new sludge drying facility.

Paterson City will get $20.6 million for combined sewer overflow upgrades.

The City of Bayonne Local Redevelopment Authority will receive $11.7 for improvements to the stormwater system and construction of sanitary sewer lines, and Newark City will receive $11.2 million for cleaning and lining of its water mains

"This bond sale marks the 22nd consecutive year the trust has sold bonds to finance needed infrastructure projects in New Jersey," Briant said.

"With this bond sale, the Environmental Infrastructure Financing Program has provided low interest long-term loans to more than 600 projects in New Jersey, representing a total loan amount in excess of $4.4 billion," he said.

Recent estimates indicate a current need for over $21 billion in funding for wastewater and drinking water projects across New Jersey.

The Environmental Infrastructure Financing Program is a partnership between the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, DEP, that combines interest-free loans from State Revolving Funds with market rate loans from the sale of Trust bonds.

This provides borrowers with a loan that is half the prevailing market rate.

The financing program loans, which are 75 and 50 percent below market rates, can provide substantial cost savings to municipalities and authorities. These savings are passed along to taxpayers and ratepayers.

Projects that promote smart growth through land preservation or urban development are eligible for loans that are one quarter the market rate.

Proceeds from this bond sale will be combined with zero percent State Revolving Funds from the DEP to provide smart growth project loans at 1.2 percent and traditional project loans at 2.4 percent.

{Photo: Anaerobic digester at the Bergen County Utilities Authority reduces the pathogens and volatile organic content of sewage sludge, making the material more stable and easier to manage during ultimate disposal. (Photo courtesy BCUA)}

Copyright Environment News Service (ENS) 2008. All rights reserved.

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