Insight With Beth Ruyak

Hosted By Beth Ruyak

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Policy Expert Illuminates How Municipal Bonding Works


Recent discussions in the City of Sacramento about bonds and bonding might have illuminated the various ways that budget numbers can work. But, unless this is the world you work in, bonding can be pretty mysterious.

Here’s a short explanation: Bonding is a way to raise money. It’s essentially a loan that has to be paid back with interest, not unlike a home mortgage. Recently, a variety of bonding formulas — and projects submitted for bond issues — were before the Sacramento City Council.

Mayor Darrell Steinberg was on Insight last week, ahead of the City Council’s vote on the budget. He expressed some consternation about people’s reaction to a proposal to issue a particular bond: “There’s controversy over a bond. There is nothing new about city government or government or bonding to invest in capital projects in a city.”

But how does bonding actually work? For a broad explanation, host Beth Ruyak will talk to Patrick Murphy. He’s policy director of fiscal and governance reform and a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California.

Read PPIC's report on their annual survey on how Californians feel about their government here.

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