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Airport Hilton to return some loan money

Tuesday, December 21, 2021 by Jo Clifton

During 2020 and the winter and spring of this year, the Hilton Austin Airport suffered considerable financial difficulties, as did the vast majority of American hotels. Due to lost revenues as a result of Covid-19, the airport hotel, which was built using bond money, fell far behind in paying some of its bills. Last summer Council approved a loan of $1.35 million to help the Hilton get back on track. Rajeev Thomas, deputy chief financial officer for the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, told members of the City Council Audit & Finance Committee Wednesday that once the travel industry started to recover late last spring, revenues improved significantly at the hotel. As a result, he said the hotel did not need all of the money it had borrowed. He said the Hilton also got 100 percent forgiveness on the federal Paycheck Protection Program loan of more than $907,000. So far, the Hilton has spent $824,599, and Thomas said he anticipates returning the remainder of the loaned money to the Department of Aviation at the end of this year.

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