Harold R. Davis and William F. Griffin, Jr. Draft New Chapter of Massachusetts General Laws


August 20, 2012 - Boston, MA
For more information contact: Joanne Thorud
(617) 589-3894; jthorud@davismalm.com

Davis Malm shareholder William F. Griffin, Jr. and Davis Malm founder Harold R. Davis, now Of Counsel to the firm, were instrumental in drafting a new chapter of the Massachusetts General Laws, which Governor Patrick signed into law on August 7, 2012 as a part of “An Act Relative to Infrastructure Investment, Enhanced Competitiveness and Economic Growth in the Commonwealth.” New Chapter 23L provides municipalities with a local option to approve tax-exempt “special assessment financing” of public infrastructure needed to support private development or to upgrade existing public works facilities. This new financing option has the potential to attract billions of dollars in private investment for local infrastructure without burdening state and municipal budgets.

“Hal and I have been preaching for nine years that special assessment financing is the rocket fuel that will power a wave of new public infrastructure and economic growth. We are delighted that Massachusetts municipalities and developers now have the opportunity to use this proven community development tool,” said Mr. Griffin.

Tax-exempt special assessment financing of public infrastructure has been used for years in many other states. It has also been used in Massachusetts when authorized by special legislation, most recently by South Shore Tri-Town Development Corporation’s Southfield project. Messrs. Griffin and Davis adapted and developed over several years this innovative financing technique that provides Massachusetts municipalities and developers non-recourse, long term, tax-exempt financing for project infrastructure. Davis Malm pioneered the use of this form of financing in 1984 by drafting special legislation enabling the East Bedford Industrial Sewer District to fund a sewer extension for the Town of Bedford without issuance of the Town’s general obligation bonds. Similar legislation was enacted in 2004 to fund infrastructure in a new industrial park in Taunton and in 2006 for the NorthPoint development in Cambridge.

Messrs. Davis and Griffin each has over 30 years of experience in the area of government-assisted financing. They have served as bond, agency, underwriter’s, trustee’s, borrower’s, credit enhancer’s, and purchaser’s counsel in hundreds of tax-exempt bond financings. Their expertise has earned Davis Malm the distinct honor of being one of a handful of firms in Massachusetts selected as approved bond counsel for the Massachusetts Development Finance Agency. The firm has served as bond or agency counsel for the Agency in over 300 tax-exempt bond issues totaling well over $1 billion. For more information on special assessment financing, please contact Mr. Davis or Mr. Griffin.

About Davis, Malm & D'Agostine, P.C.
Founded in 1979, Davis Malm is a premier mid-sized, full-service New England firm. The firm provides sophisticated, cost-effective legal representation to local, national, and international public and private businesses, institutions, and individuals in a wide spectrum of industries. The attorneys at the firm practice at the top level of the profession and deliver successful results to clients through direct partner involvement, responsive client service, and practical and creative problem solving.

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This new financing option has the potential to attract billions of dollars in private investment for local infrastructure without burdening state and municipal budgets.