Alaska railroads to issue bonds for rail projects
The Alaska Railroad Corp. said Thursday it would issue tax-exempt bonds in August to finance rail transportation projects.
During its last legislative session, the Alaska Legislature voted unanimously to allow ARRC to issue up to $165 million in tax-exempt bonds backed by Federal Transit Administration formula funds that the corporation receives annually. ARRC will issue about $76 million in tax-exempt bonds in 2006 with the remaining debt to be issued in future years, ARRC said in a statement.
The completed program will result in continuous welded rail to reduce “joint batter” which can lead to broken rail that causes derailments. Concrete ties and new 141-pound welded rail will be placed on all curves over six degrees to increase stability and a continuous wood tie replacement program will also be implemented through this and future bond issues, ARRC said.
While refurbishment of the mainline track between Anchorage and Fairbanks is the main project identified for this program, a portion of the bond proceeds will also be used for technology upgrades and acquisition of passenger equipment.