Skip to content
Subscriber Only

California Toll Bonds Hampered by Freeways: Muni Credit

Even in traffic-clogged Southern California, too few drivers want to spend as much as $6.25 to travel 12 miles on toll roads. Their reluctance is leading one highway agency to extend $2.4 billion in debt payments by as much as 12 years as investors demand more to hold its securities.

Orange County’s 51 miles (82 kilometers) of toll highways, the most extensive system in the world’s ninth-biggest economy, have fallen short of revenue projections since opening in the 1990s as the two managing agencies raise fares and refinance $4.5 billion in outstanding debt issued to build them. State Treasurer Bill Lockyer is looking into whether the authorities even will be able to raise money for escalating bond payments.