"Through Tribal Bonds, communities across Indian Country can access lower-cost borrowing to help finance economic development projects that create jobs," said Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin. "The first round of awards announced in September helped 58 tribes get infrastructure projects off the ground, and this new allocation will help jumpstart even more projects that will spur economic growth."
The Recovery Act authorized the Treasury Department to award $2 billion in Tribal Bond authority to Indian Tribal Governments through two award rounds. The first round awarded $1 billion to 58 tribes and was announced September 15, 2009. The second round of awards announced today allocates $1 billion to 76 tribes across the country.
These bonds may be issued by tribes either as traditional tax-exempt bonds or as Build America Bonds if they meet the additional program eligibility rules for Build America Bonds, in each case realizing lower borrowing costs for tribal communities. For tribes that choose to use this bond authority under the Build America Bonds program, Treasury will make a direct payment to the issuer in an amount equal to 35 percent of the interest payment on the bond.
Seventy-six tribes across the country will use the awards announced today to build health care facilities, shore up water infrastructure and invest in renewable energy manufacturing and other projects. The Pueblo of Acoma in New Mexico, for example, will use nearly $7 million in Tribal Economic Development Bonds to develop and construct a wind farm power project including an electrical collector system and tie-ins with existing utility systems. The wind energy project, Wind = Nature’s Dividend (WiND) will have a gross design capacity of 15 megawatts produced from approximately ten 1.5 MW utility scale wind turbines.
"The Pueblo of Acoma has been developing Acoma Reservation lands in western New Mexico for many years as part of its effort to create jobs and gain economic independence for its members, and to enhance the economies of the region and the State of New Mexico," said Chandler Sanchez, Governor of the Pueblo of Acoma. "I am excited about the prospects of developing renewable energy technologies here at Acoma that are made attainable through the U.S. Treasury’s Tribal Economic Development Bond initiative."