Maui County has sold $70.2 million in general obligation bonds at 2.18 percent - the lowest rate ever offered to the county.
Citi Group Global Markets won the bid for the bonds earlier this month at an interest rate that is lower than that offered to the City and County of Honolulu and the state in recent bond sales, a news release from Maui County said Thursday.
"These firms looked at Maui County's financial stability and economic strength, and they liked what they saw," said Mayor Alan Arakawa. "They know that investing in Maui is a good investment and this competitive bid for our bonds proves that."
Thirteen firms bid on the county's bonds, including Wells Fargo Bank, Bank of America, Goldman, Sachs & Co., JP Morgan Securities and Morgan Stanley & Co.
The bonds will be used to fund about $46 million in new county projects while $30 million will be used to help pay off the county's debt from prior bonds and state loans, the news release said.
Last month, Moody's, Standard & Poors and Fitch rated Maui County's bonds just below the top Triple A rating, Aa1/AA+/AA+, respectively, which was the highest ratings in the state.
Underwriters noted a strong tourism industry, booming construction projects, "strong financial operations" and "prudent fiscal management" as factors in their high ratings of Maui County.
They also cited the stability built on the cooperation between the administration and the County Council. Larry Ellison, the fifth richest man in the world who recently purchased most of Lanai, played a factor in the bond ratings, according to county officials.