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County receives $9M in bond opportunities

June 15, 2009

WASHINGTON D.C. - Columbiana County has been issued nearly $9 million in recovery bonds from a government program that has allocated $45,477,000 in bond authority for area governments and private businesses.

Congressman Charlie Wilson recently announced that the U.S. Treasury Department set aside the Recovery Zone Bonds for Ohio's Sixth Congressional District which includes Athens, Belmont, Columbiana, Gallia, Jefferson, Lawrence, Mahoning, Meigs, Monroe, Noble, Scioto and Washington counties.

"These bonds will help in so many ways," Wilson said. "This bond program will make it easier for counties and private businesses to borrow money at a better rate. The counties and businesses that make up my district can then use that money to improve infrastructure, increase job training and help families struggling with this tough economy."

The bonds have been divided into two categories - Economic Development and Facilities bond.

According to details released by the Treasury Department, Recovery Zone Economic Development Bonds are another type of taxable Build America Bond that allow state and local governments to obtain lower borrowing costs through a new direct federal payment subsidy, equal to 45 percent of the interest cost.

Some 3.5 million of the 18.191 million will go towards programs like job training and education programs in Columbiana County.

The Treasury Department indicates, Recovery Zone Facility Bonds are tax-exempt private activity bonds that can be used by private businesses in selected areas for a variety of undertakings, but they cannot be used for multi-family housing.

The county will see $5.277 million out of the $27.286 allotment for the facility bonds.

Wilson said he has optimism that all 12 counties that make up his Congressional District will use the available opportunity to benefit the local communities, businesses and residents.

"Counties will be working on specific plans to use these bonds," Wilson said. "In addition, I'm told that the Ohio Department of Development is reviewing the IRS guidance and devising a plan to use any Recovery Zone Bond allocations that may be waived by counties that don't expect to use them. I hope all 12 of the counties that make up my district use all of the bonds available to them for local projects that will directly benefit our citizens."

The Treasury Department's guidance gives entities that receive allocations wide-ranging discretion to use those portions. The entity, like the county, can also allocate it to other eligible projects at their own discretion.

Qualifying businesses can have a chance to qualify by contacting the county.



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