A Maine state authority sold $68.4 million in bonds to invest in healthcare and education initiatives.
The issuance, sold by the Maine Health and Higher Education Facilities Authority, includes serial bonds and two term bonds. The serial bonds, consisting of $46 million, mature between 2024 and 2043, yielding between 3.15% and 4.16%. They pay interest at 5%. The term bonds each consist of $11 million and mature on July 1, 2048, and July 1, 2053. They yield 4.48% and 4.55%, respectively. The securities received a rating of A1 from Moody’s Investors Service, A+ from Fitch Ratings, and AA from S&P Global Ratings.
“Maine’s positive outlook reflects our expectation of: (1) maintenance of strong reserves and structurally balanced financial operations and (2) continued GDP growth at or above the national rate,” according to Moody’s.
The issuance reflects a budgetary priority on healthcare and education. In its two-year budget signed by the governor earlier this month, the state extended an initiative that provides free community college to recently graduated high school seniors and established a paid family and medical leave program.
Proceeds from the sale of the bonds will be loaned to a combination of healthcare and education facilities: Fish River Rural Health, Maine Maritime Academy, Maine Veterans’ Homes, The Lincoln Home, and the Trustees of St. Joseph’s College. Maine Maritime Academy, a public college in Eastern Maine and one of six maritime training colleges in the United States, will receive the largest disbursement. The bonds consist of special obligations of the authority, payable by loan agreements with those institutions.
Raymond James & Associates, Inc served as underwriter on the issuance, purchasing the bonds for $71.7 million. The price reflected a premium of more than $3 million.