In Kansas, a STAR Bond Program Is Reborn to Spread Development

Williamson, Richard
May 2003
Bond Buyer;5/27/2003, Vol. 344 Issue 31643, p37
Trade Publication
This article reports on a bond program going statewide under a bill passed by the Kansas legislature. Bonds sold under the program called STAR for Sales Tax And Revenue previously required legislative approval before any town or county could use them. The tax-exempt bonds are repaid from revenues from hotel and car-rental taxes as well as sales-and-use taxes collected within the redevelopment project, or can be backed by a local government's general obligation pledge. The STAR bond program was originally designed to finance development of an amusement park called the Wonderful World of Oz in Johnson County, Kansas with $560 million of revenue bonds. When the plan to build Oz at the 9,065-acre site of the former Sunflower Army Ammunition Plant fell apart in 2001, the bond sale was scrapped. But the program took a detour to nearby Wyandotte County, where $24.3 million of STAR bonds were issued to help build the Kansas International Speedway, a major motor sport venue that has made the area the top tourist draw in Kansas.


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