Detail, east Portland photo, courtesy Miles Hochstein / Portland Ground.



For old times' sake
The bojack bumper sticker -- only $1.50!

To order, click here.







Excellent tunes -- free! And on your browser right now. Just click on Radio Bojack!






E-mail us here.

About

This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 22, 2008 10:27 PM. The previous post in this blog was Convention Center hotel scam extended to Christmas. The next post in this blog is Cousin Jim says ix-nay on the ailout-bay. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

Archives

Links

Law and Taxation
How Appealing
TaxProf Blog
Mauled Again
Tax Appellate Blog
A Taxing Matter
TaxVox
Tax.com
Josh Marquis
Native America, Discovered and Conquered
The Yin Blog
Ernie the Attorney
Conglomerate
Above the Law
The Volokh Conspiracy
Going Concern
Bag and Baggage
Wealth Strategies Journal
Jim Hamilton's World of Securities Regulation
myCorporateResource.com
World of Work
The Faculty Lounge
Lowering the Bar
OrCon Law

Hap'nin' Guys
Tony Pierce
Parkway Rest Stop
Utterly Boring.com
Along the Gradyent
Dwight Jaynes
Bob Borden
Dingleberry Gazette
The Red Electric
Iced Borscht
Jeremy Blachman
Dean's Rhetorical Flourish
Straight White Guy
HinesSight
Onfocus
Jalpuna
Beerdrinker.org
As Time Goes By
Dave Wagner
Jeff Selis
Alas, a Blog
Scott Hendison
Sansego
The View Through the Windshield
Appliance Blog
The Bleat

Hap'nin' Gals
My Whim is Law
Lelo in Nopo
Attorney at Large
Linda Kruschke
The Non-Consumer Advocate
10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place
A Pig of Success
Attorney at Large
Margaret and Helen
Kimberlee Jaynes
Cornelia Seigneur
Mireio
And Sew It Goes
Mile 73
Rainy Day Thoughts
That Black Girl
Posie Gets Cozy
{AE}
Cat Eyes
Rhi in Pink
Althouse
GirlHacker
Ragwaters, Bitters, and Blue Ruin
Frytopia
Rose City Journal
Type Like the Wind

Portland and Oregon
Isaac Laquedem
StumptownBlogger
Rantings of a [Censored] Bus Driver
Jeff Mapes
Vintage Portland
The Portlander
South Waterfront
Amanda Fritz
O City Hall Reporters
Guilty Carnivore
Old Town by Larry Norton
The Alaunt
Bend Blogs
Lost Oregon
Cafe Unknown
Tin Zeroes
David's Oregon Picayune
Mark Nelsen's Weather Blog
Travel Oregon Blog
Portland Daily Photo
Portland Building Ads
Portland Food and Drink.com
Dave Knows Portland
Idaho's Portugal
Alameda Old House History
MLK in Motion
LoveSalem

Retired from Blogging
Various Observations...
The Daily E-Mail
Saving James
Portland Freelancer
Furious Nads (b!X)
Izzle Pfaff
The Grich
Kevin Allman
AboutItAll - Oregon
Lost in the Details
Worldwide Pablo
Tales from the Stump
Whitman Boys
Misterblue
Two Pennies
This Stony Planet
1221 SW 4th
Twisty
I am a Fish
Here Today
What If...?
Superinky Fixations
Pinktalk
Mellow-Drama
The Rural Bus Route
Another Blogger
Mikeyman's Computer Treehouse
Rosenblog
Portland Housing Blog

Wonderfully Wacky
Dave Barry
Borowitz Report
Blort
Stuff White People Like
Worst of the Web

Valuable Time-Wasters
My Gallery of Jacks
Litterbox, On the Prowl
Litterbox, Bag of Bones
Litterbox, Scratch
Maukie
Ride That Donkey
Singin' Horses
Rally Monkey
Simon Swears
Strong Bad's E-mail

Oregon News
KGW-TV
The Oregonian
Portland Tribune
KOIN
Willamette Week
KATU
The Sentinel
Southeast Examiner
Northwest Examiner
Sellwood Bee
Mid-County Memo
Vancouver Voice
Eugene Register-Guard
OPB
Topix.net - Portland
Salem Statesman-Journal
Oregon Capitol News
Portland Business Journal
Daily Journal of Commerce
Oregon Business
KPTV
Portland Info Net
McMinnville News Register
Lake Oswego Review
The Daily Astorian
Bend Bulletin
Corvallis Gazette-Times
Roseburg News-Review
Medford Mail-Tribune
Ashland Daily Tidings
Newport News-Times
Albany Democrat-Herald
The Eugene Weekly
Portland IndyMedia
The Columbian

Music-Related
The Beatles
Bruce Springsteen
Seal
Sting
Joni Mitchell
Ella Fitzgerald
Steve Earle
Joe Ely
Stevie Wonder
Lou Rawls

E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Monday, September 22, 2008

Nigel Jaquiss, check your facts, please

The current scheme involves the City of Portland using its AAA credit rating to issue debt to finance the project (most recent price tag: $247 million), but... a number of significant challenges remain.
Even the Pulitzer winners repeat bunk sometimes. I am not sure how many times I have to write about this before the mainstream media people "get" it, but here I go again:

Portland's credit rating is not AAA or Aaa. Repeat -- not. Particularly not when it's issuing "urban renewal" bonds or "limited tax revenue" bonds, which is what the Convention Center hotel paper would almost certainly be. Only the city's general obligation bonds have an Aaa rating, and you can be 100 percent sure that the hotel bonds will not be of that variety. For example, the bonds currently outstanding on the 2001 Convention Center expansion are rated Aa1, which is below Aaa. Convention Center-area "urban renewal" bonds are rated Aa3 -- quite a bit below an Aaa rating.

This has all been laid out this blog several times before, but we repeat it here in the hopes that Jaquiss and others in the local Fourth Estate will eventually read and understand it:

The city lists the ratings of all of its bonds here. It has about $100 million of "Aaa" bonds outstanding -- that's the highest rating. But that's $100 million out of nearly $3 billion in outstanding debt (not counting unfunded police and fire pension liability, another $2 billion). All the other bond issues of the City of Portland carry lower ratings. The old PGE Park bonds have a rating of Aa1, which would be very good but not excellent. Some of the city's recent "urban renewal" bonds are at the Aa3 level, which is the low end of very good; other "urban renewal" bonds come in at A3, which would be considered good but not very good. Some of the city's bonds would have even lower ratings were it not for bond insurance, which used to guarantee an Aaa rating but now gets you up only to an Aa3, which is very good bordering on good.
I am glad that Jaquiss sees the folly of the Convention Center hotel project. But if he thinks the city still has AAA credit, or can even buy its way up to that rating with insurance, he's mistaken.

Comments (6)

In Nigel's defense; I am sure he just repeating the half-truths told to him by the City of Portland.

I don't know anything about "bond credit ratings", but I do know this, Mr. Jaquiss is a very studious reporter (better than most), and his error was most likely a result of him being misled by the liars down at City Hall.

Hi Jack—


I'm a little confused when you write "Portland's credit rating is not AAA or Aaa. Repeat -- not."

Because you then write "Only the city's general obligation bonds have an Aaa rating."

I would contend that in common parlance, the meaning of the term "credit rating" as it refers to issuers of government debt is the issuer's general obligation rating.

I agree that the city's non-general obligation debt (such as urban renewal bonds) is rated less than AAA. I realize you know the following, but at the risk of telling your readers something many may already know, the reason that non-general obligation debt is rated lower than general obligation debt is because the cash flows dedicated to pay off such bonds do not come from the general fund. In most cases, non-general obligation funds are therefore inherently more risky.

You have noted in the past that the city buys often buys insurance to enhance the rating of the debt non-general obligation debt. As a taxpayer, I would say that is a prudent decision because it protects the general fund and lowers the interest rate the city pays.

So, to return to your original point: the city does in fact have a AAA credit rating.

http://www.portlandonline.com/omf/index.cfm?c=26617

That AAA grade is a rating agency's assessment of all that it knows about the city's financial health. Since the city's various other debts (including the pension obligation and urban renewal bonds) are a public record, you'd have to presume the ratings agencies factor all other potential liabilities into their assessment. (Although I would obviously acknowledge the agencies have made a lot of mistakes about everything from Enron to exotic mortgage securities).

I agree with you that if the city issues bonds for a convention center hotel, they are unlikely to be general obligation bonds. But a big part of the reason that Metro came to the city in the first place is because credit ratings agencies and investors see the city as a bigger and better credit risk than Metro (because the city has a larger tax base).

And as the city explores issuing bonds for a hotel, one of the key considerations will be the credit rating (i.e the general obligation credit rating) of the issuer. That's why the city's AAA rating for general obligation bonds rating is germane, even though the bonds, if issued probably will not be general obligation.

So I would argue that if the city issues hotel bonds, part of what determines (and lowers) the cost of such debt will be the city's underlying AAA rating.

Certainly, the story I posted about Metro's delaying the decision could have been clearer.

But in summary, I think my reference to the city's having a AAA rating is both accurate and common shorthand for agencies' assessment of general creditworthiness.

Nigel

"... many times I have to write about this before the mainstream media people "get" it ..."

Jack, at some 'enlightenment moment' it dawns on us that the errors and false (mis)representations are intentional, deliberate deception. As in LIARS for Iraq Invasion -- was it 'bad intelligence' or 'incompetence in office'? And while we argue that foisted false dichotomy, they go on purposefully LYING more.

Iraqi official: $9 billion in Iraq reconstruction funds "lost." [ http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/22/AR2008092202053.html?hpid=topnews ] WMR -- In another example of how the U.S. is behind the fake "false flag" organization called "Al Qaeda," Iraqi chief investigator said some money diverted to "Al Qaeda in Iraq" accounts in Jordan and elsewhere. ( Al Qaeda -- the Database, by Pierre-Henri Bunel, Global Research, November 20, 2005 -- "In the mid-1980s, Al Qaida [abbrev. for Arabic 'Q eidat ilmu'ti'aat' ] was a database [of bank customers' names and addresses] located in [a] computer and dedicated to the communications of the Islamic Conference's secretariat.")

---
Ben Franklin (and then later, H.L. Mencken or someone): "It is impossible to get a man to understand an idea that his job depends on him not understanding."

That's why the city's AAA rating for general obligation bonds rating is germane, even though the bonds, if issued probably will not be general obligation.

So I would argue that if the city issues hotel bonds, part of what determines (and lowers) the cost of such debt will be the city's underlying AAA rating.

That's convoluted in the extreme.

Ah come on Jack, Nigel(Pulitzer)Jaquiss is just trying to find a way to say "well I REALLY was't truly wrong wrong."

Nigel is one of the best, and I admire him. People get the wrong idea about the city's overall credit situation, though. It is not excellent -- far from it.


Sponsors


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Louis Jadot, Pouilly-Fuissé 2011
Trader Joe's, Grower's Reserve Pinot Noir 2012
Zenato, Lugana San Benedetto 2012
Vintjs, Cabernet 2010
14 Hands, Hot to Trot White 2012
Rainstorm, Oregon Pinot Gris 2012
Silver Palm, North Coast Cabernet 2011
Andrew Rich, Gewurtztraminer 2008
Rodney Strong, Charlotte's Home Sauvignon Blanc 2012
Canoe Ridge, Pinot Gris, Expedition 2012
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Gamay Noir Rose 2012
Dark Horse, Big Red Blend No. 01A
Elk Cove, Pinot Noir Rose 2012
Fletcher, Shiraz 2010
Picollo, Gavi 2011
Domaine Eugene Carrel, Jongieux 2012
Eyrie, Pinot Blanc 2010
Atticus, Pinot Noir 2010
Walter Scott, Pinot Noir, Holstein 2011
Shingleback, Cabernet, Davey Estate 2010
Coppola, Sofia Rose 2012
Joel Gott, 851 Cabernet 2010
Pol Roget Reserve Sparkling Wine
Mount Eden Chardonnay, Santa Cruz Mountains 2009
Rombauer Chardonnay, Napa Valley 2011
Beringer, Chardonnay, Napa Reserve 2011
Kim Crawford, Sauvignon Blanc 2011
Schloss Vollrads, Spaetlese Rheingau 2010
Belle Glos, Pinot Noir, Clark & Telephone 2010
WillaKenzie, Pinot Noir, Estate Cuvee 2010
Blackbird Vineyards, Arise, Red 2010
Chauteau de Beaucastel, Chateauneuf-du-Pape 2005
Northstar, Merlot 2008
Feather, Cabernet 2007
Silver Oak, Cabernet, Alexander Valley 2002
Silver Oak, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2002
Trader Joe's, Chardonnay, Grower's Reserve 2012
Silver Palm, Cabernet, North Coast 2010
Shingleback, Cabernet, Davey Estate 2010
E. Guigal, Cotes du Rhone 2009
Santa Margherita, Pinot Grigio 2011
Alamos, Cabernet 2011
Cousino Macul, Cabernet, Anitguas Reservas 2009
Dreaming Tree Cabernet 2010
1967, Toscana 2009
Charamba, Douro 2008
Horse Heaven Hills, Cabernet 2010
Lorelle, Horse Heaven Hills Pinot Grigio 2011
Avignonesi, Montepulciano 2004
Lorelle, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2007
Mercedes Eguren, Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Lorelle, Columbia Valley Cabernet 2011
Purple Moon, Merlot 2011
Purple Moon, Chardonnnay 2011
Horse Heaven Hills, Cabernet 2010
Lorelle, Horse Heaven Hills Pinot Grigio 2011
Avignonesi, Montepulciano 2004
Lorelle, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2007
Mercedes Eguren, Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Lorelle, Columbia Valley Cabernet 2011
Purple Moon, Merlot 2011
Purple Moon, Chardonnnay 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend No. 12
Opula Red Blend 2010
Liberte, Pinot Noir 2010
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Indian Wells Red Blend 2010
Woodbridge, Chardonnay 2011
King Estate, Pinot Noir 2011
Famille Perrin, Cotes du Rhone Villages 2010
Columbia Crest, Les Chevaux Red 2010
14 Hands, Hot to Trot White Blend
Familia Bianchi, Malbec 2009
Terrapin Cellars, Pinot Gris 2011
Columbia Crest, Walter Clore Private Reserve 2009
Campo Viejo, Rioja, Termpranillo 2010
Ravenswood, Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
Quinta das Amoras, Vinho Tinto 2010
Waterbrook, Reserve Merlot 2009
Lorelle, Horse Heaven Hills, Pinot Grigio 2011
Tarantas, Rose
Chateau Lajarre, Bordeaux 2009
La Vielle Ferme, Rose 2011
Benvolio, Pinot Grigio 2011
Nobilo Icon, Pinot Noir 2009
Lello, Douro Tinto 2009
Quinson Fils, Cotes de Provence Rose 2011
Anindor, Pinot Gris 2010
Buenas Ondas, Syrah Rose 2010
Les Fiefs d'Anglars, Malbec 2009
14 Hands, Pinot Gris 2011
Conundrum 2012
Condes de Albarei, Albariño 2011
Columbia Crest, Walter Clore Private Reserve 2007
Penelope Sanchez, Garnacha Syrah 2010
Canoe Ridge, Merlot 2007
Atalaya do Mar, Godello 2010
Vega Montan, Mencia
Benvolio, Pinot Grigio
Nobilo Icon, Pinot Noir, Marlborough 2009

The Occasional Book

Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 119
At this date last year: 21
Total run in 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269


Clicky Web Analytics