Sumary of U.S. Cities For The First Time Could Turn Their Billions Invested In Airports Into Cash For Other Projects:
- The city of Los Angeles could get as much as $17.9 billion from a long term lease of Los Angeles .
- A recent study from the libertarian Reason Foundation suggests cities, counties, regional transportation authorities or state governments that own mid-size and large airports in the United States could access huge amounts of cash by leasing those airports to big airport operations companies .
- The legal process, the Foundation’s study said, would follow the same formula used when those same government entities do long-term lease deals with private businesses that then will charge tolls to pay for those facilities’ construction, improvements, expansions and operations.
- In such cases, the those operating companies typically pay huge lease fees – usually up front – and then use the tolls they collect to pay off over time the debt they took on to invest in those while also earning significant profits.
- But in 2018 Congress passed a new Airport Investment Partnership Program that does allow local government entities that own airports to use the proceeds from certain types of long term leases on those airports for other government purposes.
- The only big limitation: governments first must pay off any existing bond debt against their airports before using any remaining lease proceeds for off-airport purposes.