W.Va. Jail Construction Bond Revenues Faltering

By: The Associated Press Email
By: The Associated Press Email

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- West Virginia's network of regional jails is no longer receiving enough annual revenues to pay off the bonds that financed their construction.

Jail agency chief Joe DeLong told lawmakers Tuesday that revenues from court fees have plummeted from $13 million in 2004 to below $8 million last year.

But the agency needs at least $9 million from those revenues to pay bond investors. DeLong said the sinking revenue has raised flags with the New York-based companies that insure the bonds against default.

DeLong said the agency has created an $11 million reserve fund at the insurers' request. But he warned that the agency must also have sufficient ongoing revenues to keep up with the annual bond payments.

DeLong asked lawmakers to consider options during the legislative session that begins Wednesday.

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