Leading up to the 2014 Panama Canal expansion, the city of Houston, Texas, is exploring its options for alternative finance
. According to the Houston Business Journal, the Port of Houston Authority, which is making plans to account for the expansion, is determining whether or not alternative finance options will be needed to complete its planned projects associated with the canal. The Authority wanted to invest approximately $1.2 billion in capital, but it may run out of funds by 2013 due to its current bonds supported by Harris County property fees. The news source reports that the Authority is considering options such as bonds, equipment financing and bank lines of credit. Another Texas city is also facing important decisions about alternative financing. Short term lenders in Austin are facing obstacles in lending to consumers due to a recent city ordinance that restricts where lenders can be located and dictates the terms of loans, according to KTBC-TV. Lenders across the city are suing the state capital, claiming that the ordinance is unconstitutional. Two lenders, TitleMax and Rubycon, filed separate lawsuits against Austin, with TitleMax stating the ordinance prevents the company from conducting businesses within the city, says the news source.