While it is often difficult to pass legislation prior to an election, legislators agreed to pass a bill that increased state debt by more than $1.6 billion. The House recently approved this piece of legislation which was passed by the Senate in June. The Governor is expected to authorize the additional borrowing in the coming weeks.
The majority of funds are earmarked for public infrastructure projects. However, a significant amount of these newly borrowed funds will be applied to the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Projects program (RACP). The capital projects fund funnels government grants to private development projects. This new legislation will cost taxpayers $2.3 billion over 20 years or an additional $115 million in annual debt servicing.