AUGUSTA — MaineGeneral Medical Center took receipt Thursday of some $276 million in bonded funds for construction of a new regional hospital in north Augusta.

The money became available just after 10 a.m. Thursday, even as construction workers made strides readying the construction site: There’s now a wooden wall dividing the site from a parking lot of the adjacent Harold Alfond Center for Cancer Care.

A new access road runs between Old Belgrade Road and the construction trailer site.

Hay bales are being used to halt erosion, and tractor shovels and other earth-moving equipment are already shifting ground.

MaineGeneral Medical Center now has all the money in place to fund the 192-bed hospital, said Mike Koziol, chief financial officer for the hospital — provided a $10 million capital campaign is successful.

The bond money is with U.S. Bank. Koziol said the hospital is soliciting bids to hold and disburse the cash from investment groups and banks.

The money comes from tax-free bonds sold July 28 through the Maine Health and Higher Educational Facilities Authority.

“The efforts of so many members of the central Maine community over so many years have come to fruition and the new hospital is moving forward,” said Robert Lenna, executive director of the authority.

Koziol said the money has been divided among three funds:

* $218 million for construction,

* $11 million reserve that would pay interest and principal if the hospital cannot, and

* $47 million for interest.

The remaining $4 million raised through bonds was disbursed immediately for financing and closing costs.

Koziol said the hospital would draw on the funds “as needed.”

The bonds come due as soon as July 2015 and as late as 2041.

Koziol likened it to “a very big mortgage.”

MaineGeneral executives have campaigned to build a regional hospital since 2002, saying it would help attract new doctors and retain patients.

The entire hospital project, including financing, is estimated at $412 million and includes $10 million in improvements at MaineGeneral Medical Center’s Thayer campus in Waterville.

Plans call for the regional hospital to consolidate the inpatient beds now in Waterville and at the downtown Augusta campus, which is to close.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.