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How will Prince George’s County pay for the Purple Line?

Here's a look at how the Purple Line was proposed. (Courtesy MTA)

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WASHINGTON — Maryland Governor Larry Hogan announced earlier this year that Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties will have to pitch in more money for the Purple Line.

Prince George’s County announced on Friday that it will bring an additional $20 million to the table for the light rail train which will stretch from New Carrolton to Bethesda. This would bring the county’s bill to $120 million.

Prince George’s County has been tightening its budget belt in many areas recently, which leaves some wondering where the funds for the Purple Line will come from. The answer: bonds.

“We issue bonds that we end up paying back over a 20-year period of time,” says Thomas Himler, Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for Prince George’s County.

Himler says the county will most likely make six payments of $20 million to the Purple Line project over six years. The money from each payment will come from bonds to be repaid later. Himler says it’s as if the county is taking out a $20 million “mortgage” for each payment.

Montgomery County has already pledged an additional $40 million to the more than $2 billion project. Additional funding still needs to be negotiated and acquired on the state level.

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