The North Texas Tollway Authority’s debt service will increase by 22.3% to $204.5 million under the fiscal 2011 budget adopted in late December. Estimated 2011 total bond debt-service coverage is 1.85 times for first tier debt and 1.44 times coverage overall.
On the operations and maintenance side, the NTTA’S $111 million budget is 1.4% lower than the fiscal 2010 plan. The fiscal 2011 budget assumes an 8.9% increase in toll revenue compared to fiscal 2010 estimates and an 11% increase in active electronic TollTag accounts. Much of the revenue growth is attributed to continued traffic growth on the new Sam Rayburn Tollway and an increase of 84 lane miles in 2011.
“The 2011 budget reflects a belt-tightening of operational expenses while maintaining the NTTA’s focus on its customer and the advancement of mobility solutions in concert with our regional partners,” said authority chairman Victor Vandergriff.
The NTTA also put off for a year a decision on replacing its six so-called legacy contractors who have done business with the agency for years without facing competitive bids. The board is in the process of opening up the bidding but has not decided on a format.
Among the legacy contractors is financial adviser RBC Capital Markets and bond counsel McCall Parkhurst & Horton, both of which have handled billions of dollars of deals for the NTTA over the years.