The Oregon Transportation Infrastructure Bank is a statewide revolving loan fund designed to promote innovative financing solutions for transportation needs. Oregon’s program was started in 1996 as part of a federal pilot program. Legislative action in 1997 established the program in state law and expanded the bank's authority. Staff support for the program is provided by the Financial Services office of the Oregon Department of Transportation.
Eligible borrowers include cities, counties, transit districts, port authorities, other special service districts, tribal governments, state agencies, and private for-profit and not-for-profit entities.
Eligible Projects and Costs
Eligible projects include:
- Highway projects such as roads, signals, intersection improvements, and bridges.
- Transit capital projects such as buses, equipment, and maintenance or passenger facilities.
- Bikeway or pedestrian access projects on highway right-of-way.
OTIB loans may be used to cover up to 100% of the costs of a transportation project. Eligible project costs include preliminary engineering, environmental studies, acquisition of right-of-way, equipment, construction including project management and engineering, inspections, financing costs and contingencies.
Financial Assistance Available
The OTIB currently offers direct loans for eligible projects. Loans may be funded from available OTIB resources or through the sale of revenue bonds. If your project requires a form of financial assistance other than a direct loan, please contact OTIB staff to discuss your needs and explore potential solutions.
Project Selection and Approval
Projects are rated on established criteria by OTIB staff and a regional advisory committee. Three criteria are considered essential and projects must receive passing scores in these criteria to be eligible for funding. Individual criterion ratings are combined to determine an overall project score. Since the criteria ratings are determined by answers to questions in the application, it is important that applicants provide complete information. Incomplete applications will likely receive lower overall scores or may be rejected.
Based on the overall ratings, ODOT’s Chief Financial Officer recommends projects to the Oregon Transportation Commission for final approval. Once approved by the Commission, OTIB staff will prepare a letter summarizing the general terms and conditions of the loan, and noting any contingencies that must be satisfied prior to loan closing. Oregon Transportation Commission approval may not be required for loans of less than $1 million.
Applications are accepted at any time. Typically, complete applications will be processed in thirty days or less, not including OTC approval. Incomplete applications may require a substantially longer timeframe for processing. A pre-application form is available if you prefer a quick determination of eligibility issues related to your project. Pre-applications generally will be evaluated within one week of receipt.
Prudent underwriting standards are critical to ensuring that the OTIB operates as a self-sufficient revolving loan fund. OTIB staff will assess the credit quality of the applicant and determine if the resources pledged to repay the loan are reliable and adequate. The applicant’s audited financial statements, budget and other information provided in the application will be used to make this determination.
Interest Rates & Loan Terms
Loan interest rates will be based on the term of the loan, an evaluation of the credit quality of the applicant and other factors relating to the borrower's repayment ability, and prevailing market rates. Rates generally will be set as of the date of Commission approval and may be fixed or variable. The OTIB staff can provide an estimate of the interest rate for your loan.
Repayment of OTIB loans must begin within five years of project completion and must be completed within 30 years or at the end of the useful life of the project, if shorter. Applicants are encouraged to lower borrowing costs by choosing the shortest feasible repayment term, since the interest rate generally will be higher with a longer repayment schedule. In addition, the OTIB favors projects with quick loan repayment schedules.
For loans with a term in excess of one year, the department charges a one-percent loan fee at closing. This fee is designed to cover the costs of administering the program and legal review of all loan documents. The fee may be included in the loan request or paid using other funds of the applicant.
Loans from the OTIB are typically secured by a pledge of the applicants highway user tax revenues, as well as any funds/accounts related to those revenues. Additional collateral such as facilities, equipment or vehicles may also be required to secure the loan.
Prepayments of OTIB loans are not allowed except under the conditions outlined in the loan documents. A penalty of up to two percent of the outstanding loan amount may be assessed for prepayments.
After all contingencies have been met, OTIB staff will prepare a complete set of closing documents and forward them to the applicant. The primary loan document is the loan agreement. This document and its exhibits establish the conditions under which the state is willing to make the loan, and the remedies in the event of a default. Other loan documents may include a tax certificate and Internal Revenue Service Form 8038-G. These tax documents may be required in the event that the OTIB loan is funded using bond proceeds or is used as security for future OTIB bond issues.
The applicant will need to provide additional documents at closing including a resolution authorizing the borrowing and an opinion of counsel as to the legality of the transaction. The resolution must be adopted by the governing body of the borrower. A 14-day public notice period, in addition to compliance with any other public notice requirements of the applicant, is required.
Projects using federal funds must conform to all relevant federal and state requirements. Many projects are funded solely through state sources; however, some projects may require federal funds to be loaned to a borrower in limited circumstances. Some of the applicable state and federal laws, rules and regulations include:
- National Environmental Policy Act
- Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policy Act of 1970
- Civil Rights Act of 1964, including the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise program
- Davis-Bacon Act and state prevailing wage laws
- Common Rule with respect to procurement (Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations)
- Brooks Act (Public Law 92-582)
- Competitive bidding requirements as contained in state and federal law
- Buy America
- Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices
- Americans with Disabilities Act
- Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR), Chapter 731, Division 30
- Sections 103 and 141 of the Internal Revenue Code
Generally, preparation of bid documents and awarding of contracts will be performed by ODOT for any federally-funded highway project. Please allow sufficient time in your project construction schedule for these activities. Applicants are responsible for ensuring that all federal and state requirements are met during all phases of the project. OTIB and ODOT region staff will monitor projects for compliance with all requirements.
governs the establishment and use of the OTIB.
The Oregon Transportation Commission has adopted administrative rules governing the operation of the OTIB. These rules are contained in OAR Chapter 731, Division 30. A copy of the rules can be obtained from OTIB staff or from the Secretary of State’s website.
OTIB Annual Reports
For More Information
For additional information about any of ODOT's bonding programs, please contact:
Oregon Department of Transportation
355 Capitol Street NE
Salem, Oregon 97301