Clackamas County has successfully obtained financing to fund its $19.9 million obligation to the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail project. The financing was obtained through Bank of America at a historically low interest rate of 2.74%. The loan will be amortized over 20 years, with a balloon payment in 15 years. The terms of the loan agreement are almost identical to those that would have been realized by a bond sale.
The Board of County Commissioners authorized payment Aug. 22 after approving a re-negotiated agreement with TriMet that reduced the County’s obligation from $25 million. In return, TriMet agreed to concessions improving public safety and aesthetic changes to the project.
The Aug. 22 Board Order directed staff to implement financing through either bonding or a commercial bank loan. The agreement reduced the County’s cash contribution by $5 million through a combination of in-kind contributions and monetary concessions by TriMet.