The Phoenix City Council has raised the customer facility charge for car rentals at Sky Harbor International Airport to $6 per day from $4.50 to generate a debt service reserve fund of $21 million for the bond-financed facility.
The Phoenix Civic Improvement Corp. sold $260 million of bonds in 2006 for the 141-acre facility, supported by the rental car charge and insured by Financial Guaranty Insurance Co. When FGIC’s rating fell below triple-A earlier this year, the city was required to establish within 12 months a reserve fund equal to a year’s worth of debt service on the bonds.
The bonds have unenhanced ratings of A-minus from Standard & Poor’s and A3 from Moody’s Investors Service.
An average of almost 5,000 cars are rented daily at Sky Harbor, Phoenix’s main airport. In addition to the facility charge, renters must also pay a Maricopa County surcharge of $2.50 per contract or 3.25% of gross proceeds, whichever is greater, to support bonds issued by the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority to help finance the University of Phoenix Stadium in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale.