The San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved an $887 million general obligation bond measure that would pay to rebuild the San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center if approved by voters in November.

Mayor Gavin Newsom has championed the effort to rebuild the public hospital, which must be replaced to meet California earthquake safety requirements.

The new acute-care hospital will include 284 beds and be built on the lawn of the existing hospital, which will be converted for use as an outpatient facility. SFGH is San Francisco’s only Level I trauma center. 

San Francisco, which is both a city and a county, plans to issue the bonds in five series between January 2009 and January 2013. By staggering issuance across several years and timing the issues to coincide with maturing debt, the city aims to maintain current property tax rates level even after adding the new debt.

The measure will face voters Nov. 4 and must be approved by a two-thirds majority.

San Francisco is currently rebuilding its long-term care facility, Laguna Honda Hospital. It refinanced $119.3 million of Laguna Honda GOs this week. The city has also begun the nation’s first city-sponsored universal health plan, dubbed Healthy San Francisco.

San Francisco’s GO debt is rated Aa3 by Moody’s Investors Service, AA by

Standard & Poor’s, and AA-minus by Fitch Ratings.

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