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Learn about Ohio Transportation Bond Programs, including Recent Transactions.
The Ohio Treasurer issues the State's transportation bonds for the Ohio Department of Transportation through two programs: the Highway Capital Improvement Program and the Major New State Infrastructure (GARVEE) Program.
Highway Capital Improvement Program
The Ohio Treasurer issues the Highway Capital Improvement bonds for the purpose of paying the costs of construction, reconstruction, or improvements of highways throughout the State of Ohio.
The Highway Capital Improvement bonds are general obligations of the State. The full faith and credit, revenue (except for State lottery proceeds), and taxing power of the State, as well as certain fees, excises, and license taxes relating to the registration, operation, and use of vehicles on the public highways, and the fuels used for propelling those vehicles ("Highway User Receipts"), are pledged to the payment of the principal and interest on the Highway Capital Program Bonds. Payment of debt service is not dependent on the completion or operation of projects financed by the Highway Capital Improvement bonds.
The Highway Capital Improvements bonds are the highest rated bonds issued by the Ohio Treasurer.
Two-Pronged Bondholder Security
Highway User Receipts pledge: FY 2017 Coverage of 22.8x
General obligation pledge of the State (excluding State lottery proceeds)
Ohio Constitution prohibits use of Highway User Receipts for payment of debt service on bonds issued for any non-highway purpose
Ohio Constitution limits total par outstanding at any time to $1.2 billion
Debt service is funded approximately two-months in advance of payment
Ohio Constitution, Article VIII, Section 2m
Ohio Revised Code, Section 151.01
Ohio Revised Code, Section 151.06
Major New State Infrastructure (GARVEE) Program
The Ohio Treasurer issues Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle (or GARVEE) bonds to finance highway construction projects that are eligible for federal funding under Title 23 of the United States Code. The debt service charges are secured by and paid from the federal transportation funds allocated to the State, subject to biennial appropriation. The State has also covenanted to use for the payment of debt service, if necessary, other State transportation moneys that have been appropriated to the Ohio Department of Transportation.
The Ohio GARVEE Program is well established, spanning 20 years and 17 series
Additional Bonds Test requires 5x Maximum Annual Debt Service based on Obligation Authority
ODOT prefunds debt service by depositing motor vehicle fuel tax dollars in the Federal Fiscal Year preceding that in which debt service payments are due
Federal funding received cannot be used to reimburse the State for transportation projects until the GARVEE debt service has been fully set aside
Ohio Constitution, Article VIII, Section 13
Ohio Revised Code, Section 5531.09
Ohio Revised Code, Section 5531.10
Link to the Ohio Department of Transportation
In December 2018, the Treasurer’s Office issued $210 million in bonds on behalf of the Department of Transportation. These bonds fund projects in counties across Ohio, including Mahoning County, Franklin County, and Allen County. Such projects include the construction of a new interchange and roundabout near Youngstown in northeast Ohio, the reconstruction of the median shoulder of IR 670 to increase lane capacity in Columbus, and the construction of an underpass to provide a rail grade separation for the upwards of 36,000 vehicles that are blocked by train crossings in Lima.
In April 2018, the Treasurer's Office issued $370 million in bonds on behalf of the Department of Transportation. These bonds fund various 24 capital road and bridge projects across 12 Ohio counties. Such projects include resurfacing and repairing parts of I-275, the Ohio Bridge Partnership Program consisting of replacing 220 structurally deficient bridges throughout Ohio, and adding one lane in both directions between IR 70 and US 33.
In June 2020, the Treasurer's Office issued $85 million in bonds on behalf of the Department of Transportation. These bonds fund 27 capital road and bridge projects spanning 19 Ohio counties. Such projects include resurfacing and rehabilitation of portions of I-77 in Stark County; rebuilding, resurfacing and widening of structures in the I-70/I-71 “split” in Franklin County; and a major bridge and multi-lane reconstruction and widening of I-75 in Wood and Lucas Counties.