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County Council saves public $600,000 a year by refinancing bonds


Council approves replacing bonds for purchase of Pat Steel Building at Harborview


The Metropolitan King County Council today gave its unanimous approval to the issuance of up to to $56 million in bonds to refinance the construction debt on the Patricia Bracelin Steel Building on the Harborview Medical Center campus. The bonds will allow King County to take advantage of lower interest rates as well as exercise its purchase option for the building. The acquisition of the building will save building tenants $600,000 a year over the remaining life of the bonds, freeing up money for public services.

“The public will reap the benefits of lower operating costs at King County’s Harborview Medical Center thanks to refinancing bonds at lower interest rates,” said Councilmember Larry Phillips. “Saving $600,000 per year in lease payments at the Pat Steel Building at Harborview means those savings can be passed on to patients and the public.”

“The County has worked hard to maintain its AAA bond rating. This keeps costs low and saves the taxpayers’ dollars,” said Councilmember Joe McDermott who chairs the Budget & Fiscal Management Committee. “This is one part of our work to run an efficient County government.”

The Pat Steel building houses clinics and administrative offices for Harborview Medical Center. Harborview Medical Center is owned by King County and operated by the University of Washington.

The financing of the construction of the Pat Steel building was done using an intermediary non-profit corporation in order to protect the public from construction risk. The County leases the building and subleases to Harborview. The bond issuance will allow the County to exercise its option to purchase the Pat Steel building. Purchasing the building will save about $600,000 annually from 2013 until 2031, the remaining term of the lease.

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