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Yes, That's Billion With a B

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Get those shovels out—California has just sold $6.5 billion in bonds after almost being completely shut out of the market. The New York Times reports the sale is $2.5 billion more than expected, and $1 billion of the money will fast-track infrastructure projects for transportation, water, school construction, and flood control projects. Seven hundred million will go to infrastructure projects halted during the winter, and a huge chunk will repay earlier loans. H. D. Palmer, a spokesman for the California Department of Finance tells the paper the goal "was to balance the financial needs of current projects with those the state would like to start in an effort to create and maintain employment, while still taking some of the proceeds to pay bills. “The good news,” he said, “is we can get back in the infrastructure game.” But $5.8 billion of California’s fragile budget deal is dependent on measures that must be approved by voters next month. If those measures fail, lawmakers and the governor will have to dig back into the budget, which could cause the rates to increase more. That is why, [Matt Fabian, a managing director of Municipal Market Advisors] theorized, the state chose to make such a large sale." [New York Times]