The Long Island Power Authority doesn’t anticipate selling bonds or notes in 2008 but does plan to sell $290 million of debt from 2009 to 2012, according to its five year financial forecast released last week. The forecast said LIPA will sell $90 million of debt in 2009, $40 million in 2010, $85 million in 2011, and $75 million in 2012. The forecast was released as part of the authority’s proposed $3.7 billion 2008 operating budget, which the LIPA board will consider at its Dec. 13 board meeting. “We may [issue bonds] in 2009 because we have some options to exercise regarding the acquisition of some of the power plants owned by [London-based] National Grid,” said LIPA president and chief executive officer Kevin Law.Law said he will present a new three-year capital budget to the board in the spring. LIPA is looking for refunding opportunities in 2008 but at this point doesn’t anticipate doing any refundings, he said.Debt service on the authority’s $6.68 billion of debt outstanding would remain fairly constant, averaging about $531 million annually, according projections averaged from the forecast. LIPA expects interest payments in 2008 to decrease to $319.5 million, or 7.7%, compared to 2007’s budgeted levels. It attributes the decrease to its 2006 debt restructuring and lower variable interest rates anticipated in the coming year. The authority expects an effective interest rate of 4.8% in 2008 on its outstanding debt compared to 5.0% in 2007. LIPA’s capital expenditures would total $1.27 billion over the five-year period, according to the forecast. The authority’s biggest year for capital expenses would be 2008 with $307 million, and the smallest would be 2010 with $236.2 million. Most of the capital expenditures would use pay as you go financing, Law said.
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