Davis Malm shareholder Bill Griffin and Davis Malm founder Hal 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 Bill.

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. Bill and Hal 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.

Bill and Hal 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.

Read about Chapter 23L of the General Laws here.

For more information contact: Joanne Thorud; (617) 589-3894; jthorud@davismalm.com

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