Capitol Buy Back Would Cost $105 Million

January 11, 2012

In her State of the State address this week, Governor Jan Brewer asked the legislature to help celebrate the state’s centennial by buying back the capitol complex.  KJZZ’s Mark Brodie reports on what that would entail.


JAN BREWER: "I’m asking that you send me a bill, by Statehood Day, that allows me to buy back the capitol complex."

MARK BRODIE: The sale leaseback plan that included the house and senate buildings, the executive tower, and several other buildings brought in about a billion dollars…which the legislature used to close budget gaps.  State Comptroller Clark Partridge says to buy the buildings back, the state will have to pay the principal…and pre-pay the interest it would have paid over time.  The principal comes to about $81 million, while the interest totals about $24 million….for a grand total of approximately $105 million.  Partridge says the investors who nominally own the buildings don’t actually have any rights of ownership.

CLARK PARTRIDGE: "What they’re buying is a cash flow, and so this gives them what their investment was, it was the choice of how they invested.  They never had any intention to own the buildings, per se."

MARK BRODIE: Partridge says even if the state buys back the buildings this year, it will still have to pay all of the interest it would owe on them for the life of the deal in a lump sum.