All Posts Tagged With: "Iowa Finance Authority"

Casinos, Bonds, and Cigarettes

Iowa Politics - Cigarette and DieBack in 2001, Iowa decided to securitize its portion of the multi-state tobacco lawsuit settlement. “Securitize” means to borrow against it. They issued almost $700 million in bonds through the Iowa Tobacco Settlement Authority, with the settlement money itself as the asset backing the bonds. Most of them are even tax-exempt.

Such is the nature of public finance; the settlement was a windfall of revenue that didn’t have to be taxed from the citizens, but instead of just riding the wave, the government used it as collateral to borrow money. Never put off spending that can be done today.

More than seventy percent of the money Iowa receives from the tobacco settlement goes to debt service on those bonds – these, like most government bonds, …


Time to End the Iowa Finance Authority

In 1975, Iowa’s elected so-and-so’s felt inclined to establish the Iowa Finance Authority, giving it the mission of assisting the people of Iowa in acquiring affordable housing.  I guess Iowans tended to live in mud shacks prior to 1975, but no matter, the government is here to help.

Except, it doesn’t help. The Iowa Finance Authority’s own website (http://www.iowafinanceauthority.gov/) tells the tale, and affordability is not the goal of our state-level state corporatists. According to the talking points, IFA helps low-income Iowans, the disabled, and the otherwise strained in the task of obtaining affordable housing, which is simply not true. Nothing the IFA does is aimed at helping citizens afford anything, all they do is encourage easy credit.

Getting easy credit is not …


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