Along the entire U.S.-Mexico border, the North American Development Bank (NADB) works with border communities to develop and finance infrastructure projects that improve the environment and health conditions. With the onset of COVID-19 and its increasing effects on these communities, the NADB Board of Directors established a temporary program to support communities dealing with the economic, health, and social impacts of the pandemic (“ProRec”). Through this program, two Texas border communities will be able to refinance existing debt while a third in Chihuahua will benefit from a US$1 million grant to improve wastewater collection infrastructure.
“The current pandemic we face has produced challenges for us all, but NADB continues to prove it is a partner at the ready for the needs of our communities,” said U.S. Congressman Will Hurd (TX-23). “Thanks to the creation of the new COVID-19 recovery loan program, NADB will continue to address public health challenges in more ways than one, while allowing our South and West Texas communities to do the same. Challenges remain, but I know NADB will continue to promote the sustainability and development of the U.S.-Mexico border region and I will continue to strongly support its mission.”
Earlier this month, Maverick County officials signed a debt refinancing deal of up to US$17.75 million with NADB, becoming the first project financed under ProRec. This will provide more efficient debt service cash flows for the maintenance and operation of existing public works infrastructure and allow Maverick County to continue to provide public services for the benefit of its residents. The refinancing agreement is estimated to reduce current debt service by roughly US$230,000 annually during the first three years of the NADB loan, allowing Maverick County more financial flexibility and lessening the need for fee or rate adjustments to support public services in the community.
NADB’s Board approved the refinancing of $1.4 million in existing debt for the City of Presidio to continue to provide public services for the benefit of its residents. These services include water, sewer, wastewater treatment, storm drainage, solid waste collection and disposal, emergency response, street paving, public lighting, and public library, among others. Refinancing the existing debt, which has a weighted average interest rate of 3.11%, will alleviate the liquidity position of the City of Presidio. These savings will benefit city residents, as they will give the City of Presidio more financial flexibility, lessening the need to raise fees or rates to continue providing public services in the community.
Calixto Mateos-Hanel, NADB Managing Director, said that “one of the objectives of ProRec is to expedite the approval of refinancing proposals for public entities that meet the eligibility criteria in order to free up cash flows that can be redirected to support public services and mitigate the effects of the pandemic.”
The water utility in Ojinaga, Chihuahua will receive a $1.02 million grant from the Border Environment Infrastructure Fund (BEIF), which is funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and administered by NADB. The BEIF grant will support improvements to wastewater collection infrastructure, reducing the risk of pipeline failure and eliminating approximately 281,000 gallons per day of untreated wastewater.
With these programs and grants, NADB continues to finance environmental infrastructure projects while improving the quality of life for U.S-Mexico border residents.