No Effect on AOC Bond Downgrade

Posted August 10, 2011 at 12:09pm

The downgrade of Architect of the Capitol bonds will have no effect on the agency and its work, an AOC spokeswoman said Wednesday.

Following its downgrade of the U.S. economy, Standard and Poor’s announced Monday that several bonds backed by federal leases would also be lowered from the stellar AAA rating to AA+. One of those bond categories was Architect of the Capitol bonds.

“The lower ratings on the bonds reflect our view that the lease rental payments supporting the various bonds, while subject to appropriation, are backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S.,” the agency said in a statement.

But AOC spokeswoman Eva Malecki said the agency has not issued bonds directly so the agency anticipates “no impacts” following the downgrade.

A developer sold the bonds during the development of the Thurgood Marshall Federal Judiciary Building, which was completed in 1992 and sits adjacent to Union Station.

“The bonds were backed by the U.S. government by way of the AOC’s lease payments on the building,” Malecki said in an email. “The Federal government intends to continue leasing the Thurgood Marshall Building through the maturity of the bonds, at which time the ownership of the building will transfer to the U.S. government.”