private activity bond

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Private Activity Bond

A tax-exempt municipal bond in which a local government entity is seeking to raise money for a private company. A municipality issues a private activity bond when it wishes to attract a business and the jobs it brings to the area, especially when the business may be otherwise unable to obtain financing for the project. The municipality issuing the bond must be able to prove that a public benefit derives from the private activity bond in order to qualify for tax-exempt status. Private activity bonds generally are not guaranteed by the revenue of the municipality.

private activity bond

A type of municipal bond issued when funds are to be used for a nonessential purpose. Private activity bonds pay taxable interest unless specifically exempted by the federal government. Private activities for which tax-exempt bonds may be issued include airports, electric and gas distribution systems, government mass transportation systems, hazardous waste disposal facilities, solid waste disposal facilities, and student loans. Small issues of industrial development revenue bonds and nonprofit college and hospital bonds are also permitted. Except for nonprofit college and hospital bonds, interest from tax-exempt private activity bonds is subject to the alternative minimum tax. Also called nonessential function bond, private purpose municipal bond. Compare essential function bond. See also 501(c)(3) bond, municipal bond, small-issue bond.