Posts in Financing.
Posted in Financing

Nossaman attorneys Yuliya Oryol, Peter Mixon and Allan Ickowitz provided feedback and comments on drafts of Bridging Public Pension Funds and Infrastructure Investing, a white paper co-authored by Clive Lipshitz and Ingo Walter (NYU Stern School of Business).

The paper is a thoughtful evaluation of the sustainability of the largest public pension systems in the United States and the role of infrastructure investing in their portfolios. Lipshitz and Walter argue that infrastructure should become more central to pension portfolios despite the existing challenges for ...

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A pair of Senators from both sides of the aisle, Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.) and Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), introduced the Public Buildings Renewal Act of 2019 last week, which would authorize the use of tax exempt financing along with private equity to rebuild schools and public buildings through public-private partnerships.  We owe it to our students and teachers, our firefighters and nurses, and all taxpayers to find a way to upgrade our schools and public buildings.  This is a public health and safety issue that impacts not just Hoosiers, but all Americans.  Our bill ...

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Posted in Financing

SH 130 Concession Company, the private entity that operates and maintains the 41-mile southern section of State Highway 130, has emerged from Chapter 11 protection with new ownership, new senior management and $260 million in new financing. The financial reorganization has removed $1.4 billion in debt from the balance sheet of SH 130 Concession Company and will significantly improve the liquidity of the business.

SH 130 Concession Co. operates and maintains Segments 5 & 6 of SH 130 from Mustang Ridge to Seguin, Texas. The road is owned by the Texas Department of Transportation, which ...

Posted in Financing, News

Among other policy initiatives, the Trump Administration has advocated for the need to improve the nation’s infrastructure in order to maintain America’s economic competitiveness. In its recently released 2018 proposed budget, the Administration included $200 billion in outlays related to its infrastructure initiatives.  The Administration’s budget also focuses on leveraging private sector involvement as part of the overall solution to reform and change how infrastructure projects are regulated, funded, delivered and maintained.

There have been reports that one ...

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Posted in Financing, News, P3s, Policy

On Tuesday, May 16, 2017 the Senate’s Committee on Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure will hold a hearing titled Leveraging Federal Funding; Innovative Solutions for Infrastructure.

The stated purpose of the hearing is for Senators to examine the need for more public sector funding and private sector financing in the Federal Highway Program.  To this end, the Subcommittee has scheduled the following individuals to testify on this topic:

  • Eric Garcetti (Mayor, City of Los Angeles; Chair of U.S. Conference of Mayors Infrastructure ...
Posted in Financing

The Angels® Flight Railway Foundation, represented by Nossaman LLP and Shumaker Mallory LLP, reached a historic agreement with a team led by ACS Group and including Sener Engineering and Systems, to put the iconic Angels Flight® Railway in downtown Los Angeles back into service by this coming Labor Day.

The agreement utilizes a public-private partnership to restore the Railway to passenger service, through full-scale modernization and state-of-the-art safety improvements, and to operate and maintain it to industry standards for 30 years. Borrowing  a revenue risk concession ...

The National Council for Public Private Partnerships (NCPPP) and the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce recently concluded on October 28 a very well-attended two day conference in Lexington, Kentucky on the Commonwealth’s new public-private partnership (P3) enabling legislation, the so-called "HB-309.  HB-309’s chief drafter, Rep. Leslie Combs, was on-hand, participating in nearly every panel discussion, either as a panelist or from the audience.  Rep. Combs reflected on HB-309 as if she were a proud mama, and her and fellow Kentuckians’ enthusiasm for its flexibility ...

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) is calling for project applications for $850 million in transportation infrastructure grants, representing the second opportunity for funding from a program that has already received tremendous interest from public project sponsors and the infrastructure community. The grants, announced in a Notice of Funding Opportunity posted on the USDOT website on October 28, find their genesis and funding authorization in the FAST Act (P.L. 114-94), which President Obama signed into law on December 4, 2015.

The FAST Act created a ...

Posted in Financing, P3s

We all know how hard it is to change federal statutes these days—you need an Act of Congress and the President to sign the bill.  Last week, a group of the top public finance lawyers in the US offered an approach relating to the use of tax exempt bonds that wouldn’t require a change in tax statutes but instead could be accomplished through a change in the regulations relating to the so-called private use test.  As the group pointed out in its letter to high ranking US Treasury officials, Congress itself has made it clear that Treasury had the authority to adopt other, more flexible rules.

The ...

On March 31, 2015, Congressman John K. Delaney (D-MD) spoke at the Washington Briefing of the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association (IBBTA) in Washington, DC.  At the event, Congressman Delaney provided an update on a bipartisan bill he has sponsored known as The Infrastructure 2.0 Act to fund the federal highway program.  The bill uses international corporate tax reform to provide a six-year funding source for the Highway Trust Fund.  Specifically, the bill establishes a mandatory, one-time 8.75% tax on existing overseas profits accumulated by U.S. multi-national ...

Posted in Financing, P3s

At the TRB P3 Subcommittee meeting on January 12, 2015, among the topics discussed is the growth in the U.S. P3 market of the availability payment approach and less use of toll concessions.  Availability payment contracts have the advantage of lowering financing costs, incentivizing high quality performance and keeping toll setting authority with the public owner.  However, there may be a limit to the amount of annual payments a public agency is willing to commit itself to make.  Toll concessions shift demand and revenue risk to the private sector and interest particularly among ...

The San Joaquin Hills Transportation Corridor Agency today successfully refinanced $1.4 billion of its $2.2 billion in outstanding debt issued to fund construction of the 73 Toll Road. "This is great news for drivers and the communities that surround the 73 Toll Road," said Scott Schoeffel, Chairman of the San Joaquin Hills Transportation Corridor Agency, the joint powers authority responsible for financing the 73 Toll Road. "Refinancing improves the agency's long-term financial health by lowering the annual debt service payments and improving financial flexibility."

The ...

Posted in Financing, Water

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is currently holding a roadshow of listening sessions across the US to provide information on the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) and its proposed five-year pilot program to provide an alternative funding source for a variety of water infrastructure projects.

The EPA presented in Los Angeles on October 17, 2014 where attendees included representatives from public and private finance, contractors, water operators, state and local government entities and legal and financial advisers from across southern ...

Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts will soon become a reality for many cities and counties looking for a mechanism to perform some functions previously done by redevelopment agencies.  Senate Bill 628 (SB 628) passed the State legislature on August 30, 2014 which, when signed by the Governor, would expand the use of Infrastructure Financing Districts.

SB 628 authorizes the legislative body of a city or county to establish an enhanced infrastructure financing district, adopt an infrastructure financing plan, and issue bonds, for which only the enhanced infrastructure ...

In an historic move, Standard & Poor’s upgraded the Orange County Transportation Agency SR91 Express Lanes Toll Revenue Bonds to AA-, making it one the highest rated managed lanes projects in the world.  The bonds were issued last year to refund bonds that were issued in 2003 when OCTA acquired the SR91 Express Lanes project from the private consortium that developed the project under California’s prior P3 law.

The 91 Express Lanes is a four-lane, 10-mile toll road built in the median of California’s Riverside Freeway, State Route 91, between the Orange/Riverside County line and ...

The Regents of the University of California (the Regents), on behalf of the University of California, Merced (UC Merced), announced on August 1, 2014 that it received Statements of Qualifications (SOQs) from six teams in response to a Request for Qualifications for the UC Merced 2020 P3 Project.

The respondents and their equity members are (in alphabetical order):

  • Edgemoor Plenary EdR Partners (EP2):  Edgemoor Infrastructure & Real Estate LLC, Plenary Group USA Ltd., and Education Realty Trust, Inc.
  • E3 2020:  Balfour Beatty Investments, Inc.
  • Gateway2Learn:  HOCHTIEF PPP Solutions ...
Posted in Financing, P3s, Policy

President Barak Obama today announced the Build America Investment Initiative (the Initiative).  According to the Fact Sheet released by the White House in advance of the announcement, the purpose of the Initiative is to increase infrastructure investment and economic growth by engaging with state and local governments and private sector investors to encourage collaboration, expand the market for public-private partnerships (PPPs) and put federal credit programs to greater use.

The transportation industry will be the first to benefit from the Initiative.

The Fact Sheet lays ...

Posted in Financing

The Transportation Research Board’s (TRB) 5th annual International Conference on Financing Surface Transportation will be held from July 9-11, 2014 at the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Center in Irvine, CA.

The conference will examine the current status of transportation finance and future possibilities through thought-provoking program offerings with presenters from the fields of transportation research, government, and the private sector.

Conference sessions include:

  • Innovation, Experimentation and Exploration – The Landscape of Transportation Funding and Finance ...
Posted in Financing

Following the 412-4 vote in the U.S. House on Tuesday and the 91-7 vote in the U.S. Senate yesterday, the president is expected to quickly sign into the law the Water Resources and Reform Development Act of 2014 (WRRDA).  In addition to $12.3 billion earmarked for 8 current and 34 new water projects, a key provision of the WRRDA is the Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (WIFIA) which establishes a 5 year pilot program administered by the EPA and Corp of Engineers to provide low cost loans for water, waster\water and flood control infrastructure projects.

Modeled after the ...

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Tags: TIFIA, WIFIA
Posted in Financing

The U.S. Department of Transportation announced Monday that it is making $474 million in financing available through its transportation investments grant program pursuant to the Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013 (Pub. L. 113-6, March 26, 2013).  The appropriation is similar to the appropriation for the TIGER program and USDOT will continue to refer to the program as ‘‘TIGER Discretionary Grants.’’ As with previous rounds of TIGER, funds for the FY 2013 TIGER program will be awarded on a competitive basis for projects that will have a significant impact on the ...

Posted in Financing

Last night the Knik Arm Bridge and Toll Authority, responsible for development of the $750 million Knik Arm Crossing project in the Anchorage, Alaska region, filed a letter of interest with the USDOT for TIFIA credit assistance.  It is one of the first, if not the first, letters of interest filed under the USDOT’s July 27 Notice of Funding Availability implementing the MAP-21 amendments to TIFIA.

KABATA filed a letter of interest in November 2011 for a $308 million TIFIA loan.  With the changes in MAP-21 authorizing TIFIA credit assistance up to 49% of eligible project costs and ...

Posted in Financing
On July 27 U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced the availability of over $16 billion in TIFIA credit assistance for critical infrastructure projects across the country as a result of the recently enacted MAP-21.
MAP-21 contains meaningful reforms that collectively represent a significant improvement in federal surface transportation law. Join our panel, including key house staff members critical to MAP-21, for a 90-minute discussion on selected aspects of the Act and listen as they address the effects it will have on the transportation industry.
Posted in Financing

On June 29, 2012 Congress passed the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21), a compromise measure to reauthorize transportation funding through the end of 2014.  A bipartisan and bicameral measure, MAP-21 contains meaningful reforms that, although marred by some missed opportunities, collectively represent a significant improvement in federal surface transportation law.

We foresee continued heavy demand for TIFIA credit assistance, particularly given the more attractive features of the reenacted TIFIA program.  We have some concern that the combination ...

Posted in Financing

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) announced a much-anticipated fourth round of funding for USDOT’s popular TIGER Discretionary Grants program, totalling $500 million for capital investments in surface transportation infrastructure.

Pre-applications must be submitted by Feb. 20, 2012 and final applications must be submitted by March 19, 2012.  Previous rounds of competitive TIGER grants were heavily over-subscribed.  The last round attracted 848 applications with funding requests for $14.29 billion, while USDOT awarded funds in December 2011 for 46 capital ...

Posted in Financing

On Nov. 3, 2011 the TIFIA Joint Program Office announced availability of limited funding for TIFIA credit assistance for fiscal year 2012 and invited submission of letters of interest (LOIs) by Dec. 30, 2011.  While we are aware of no official announcement, sources inform us that the TIFIA JPO received LOIs from 26 project sponsors seeking over $13 billion in credit assistance to finance almost $36 billion in new infrastructure investment.

This current interest continues a three-year trend in strong demand for TIFIA credit assistance, and, so far anyway, a limited amount of available ...

Posted in Financing

This morning, U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) Secretary Ray LaHood announced the winners of the extremely competitive TIGER III grant application cycle.  Forty-six projects in 33 states will share $511 million in grant funds.  The announcement was made several months earlier than the originally scheduled date.

As has been the case with the previous two rounds of TIGER grants, this cycle was wildly oversubscribed.  According to the announcement, USDOT received 848 project applications from all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, DC, requesting a total of $14.29 ...

Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21), the draft reauthorization bill unanimously voted out of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, contains major improvements to the TIFIA program that many, including those of us at Nossaman, have been advocating.  These changes, if enacted, will greatly expand availability and eliminate much of the uncertainty over whether a project will be selected.

  • The bill eliminates virtually ALL of the selection criteria, converting availability from a discretionary competitive selection process to a simple objective ...
Posted in Financing

On July 19, 2011, the Georgia Department of Transportation issued a press release stating that GDOT was invited to apply for a TIFIA loan in the amount of $270 million for the Northwest Corridor Project – a project to add managed lanes along I-75 and I-575 in the metro Atlanta region with approximately $968 million in capital costs.  The press release followed an announcement by Governor Nathan Deal that the procurement of the Northwest Corridor Project will proceed to the next phase through the issuance of a final Request for Proposals.  Three consortia – consisting of major national ...

Posted in Financing

Posted by guest blogger Ryan J. Orr

A recently published paper analyzes returns on infrastructure investments and produces some rather surprising findings. The paper, Risk, Return and Cash Flow Characteristics of Infrastructure Fund Investments by Florian Bitsch, Axel Buchner, and Christoph Kaserer, examines an extensive dataset of infrastructure and non-infrastructure deals and finds that the data does not back up the conventional wisdom that infrastructure investments offer long-term, stable and predictable, inflation-linked returns with low correlation to other ...

Posted in Financing

As discussed in our previous blog post, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) announced this week the availability of nearly $527 million in FY 2011 funds for the third round of USDOT’s wildly popular TIGER Discretionary Grant program.

Pre-applications for the funds are due by October 3, 2011, and final applications are due by October 31, 2011.  USDOT will host a half-day seminar and webcast providing information and guidance on the TIGER application process on July 18, 2011.

The TIGER program awards funds on a competitive basis to projects that will have a significant ...

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Tags: Financing
Posted in Financing

The federal fiscal 2011 budget compromise authorized a third round of stimulus spending on transportation capital projects, dubbed TIGER III, under the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery program. $527 million will become available from the U.S. Department of Transportation for selected projects.

Of this amount, up to $150 million will be slated for direct loans and other credit assistance on terms similar to the TIFIA program. This more than doubles up on the $122 million TIFIA budget authority for the 2011 fiscal year.

What we are interested in seeing is ...

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Tags: Financing
Posted in Financing

The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) and the Center for Excellence in Project Finance at the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) recently released the report entitled "Transportation Governance and Finance: a 50-State Review of State Legislatures and Departments of Transportation," and will be hosting a free webinar on June 21 at 2pm ET to present the findings of the study (previewed during a committee meeting in January).

Listening to the webinar and reading the study is a must for anyone who wants to understand how ...

Posted in Financing

The fiscally conservative House majority continues to pursue reductions in federal spending, and federal transportation spending is part of the mix.  Further use of the general fund to supplement the Highway Trust Fund motor fuel taxes, as well as increases in fuel taxes, are opposed by the House majority.  Cuts could come in several forms, including cuts in Title 23 programs overall or cuts to specific programs.

Given the diminishing role of the Highway Trust Fund in funding future transportation investment, federal credit assistance under the TIFIA program needs to grow in ...

AASHTO, through its Center for Excellence in Project Finance, has released its final report on strategies for funding and financing surface transportation for the next decade. The report, Funding and Financing Solutions for Surface Transportation in the Coming Decade,  is available for download via AASHTO’s website at the following address:

http://www.transportation-finance.org/pdf/featured_documents/sep_30_report_final_2011_02_02.pdf

In September 2010, AASHTO convened a forum of members of Congress, representatives of state and local governments, and ...

Posted in Financing, Policy

FHWA has extended the deadline for FY2011 TIFIA Letters of Interest (LOI) to March 1, 2011. The previous Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA), issued on January 19, had allowed less than a month for interested applicants to prepare and submit LOIs.

The January 25 revised NOFA included a new phrase addressing the role of tolling and pricing programs in enhancing environmental sustainability. Under the revised selection criteria, applicants can demonstrate that their projects help preserve and protect the environment through the use of tolling or pricing structures to reduce ...

Earlier this week USDOT Secretary LaHood announced the winners of the highly competitive TIGER II grant application cycle. Forty-two capital construction projects and 33 planning projects in 40 states will share nearly $600 million in grant funds.

According to the announcement, USDOT received nearly 1,000 construction grant applications for more than $19 billion from all 50 states, U.S. territories and the District of Columbia.  Roughly 29 percent of TIGER II money goes for road projects, 26 percent for transit, 20 percent for rail projects, 16 percent for ports, four percent ...

Posted in Financing, Policy

Jeffrey Parker, President of Jeffrey A. Parker and Associates, has worked closely with Nossaman on several projects, including two recent projects in Florida.  We are pleased to include his comments here as a guest to Infra Insight.

The House Subcommittee on Highways and Transit invited me to participate in a hearing on April 14, 2010 on Using Innovative Financing to Deliver Highway and Transit Projects.  As a participant on the panel, I was pleased to share my firm’s experiences with availability payments and answer questions from the Subcommittee Members on the I-595 and Port of ...

USDOT has published interim guidance on its new TIGER II competitive grant program, a $600M successor to the popular $1.5B TIGER program included in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).  The guidance outlines application deadlines, eligibility and project selection criteria, and indicates a shift in the focus of the program from near-term job creation to long-term outcomes.

TIGER II is not constrained by ARRA’s focus on shovel ready projects and immediate job creation (funds must be awarded by 9/30/2012, but there is no deadline for expenditure or project completion).  Instead, TIGER II seeks long-term outcomes, though these outcomes fall in the same general areas as TIGER I: safety, economic competitiveness, livability, sustainability, and state of good repair (the extent to which a project improves the condition of existing infrastructure and minimize life-cycle costs).

Click below for additional details about the focus and requirements of TIGER II.

USDOT Announces $1.5 Billion in TIGER Grants – $60M in TIFIA Allocations

On February 17, the one year anniversary of the landmark American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, USDOT announced the final list of TIGER grant recipients. Grants range in size from $3.15M for a roadway rehabilitation/reconstruction in Burlington, VT to a $105M grant for construction of two new intermodal facilities in Memphis, TN and Birmingham, AL to support freight rail service from the Gulf Coast to the Mid-Atlantic.

When combined with state and private funds, the TIGER funds will support ...

USDOT has published new program guidance for the TIFIA Program which clarifies project selection criteria and processes. The new guidance is the product of long deliberation at USDOT, which withdrew an earlier proposal last spring. [See USDOT Withdraws Proposed Changes to the TIFIA Program.]

The notice:

  • Announces a change in TIFIA selection criteria and processes going forward – rather than the current first come, first served basis for project submission, the new process would pool all letters of interest and apply weighting criteria to choose the best projects.

  • Requests ...

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), announced at a press conference in Miami today that it has reached financial close on the Port of Miami Tunnel Project


FDOT, in partnership with Miami-Dade County and the City of Miami, entered into an agreement with MAT Concessionaire, LLC (MAT) which includes Meridiam Infrastructure Finance, S.a.r.l. and Bouygues Travaux Publics as equity members. The $900 million public-private partnership (PPP) deal uses an availability payment structure that provides for payment to MAT over 30 years after completion of construction ...

Posted in Financing

USDOT is weighing 1400 TIGER grant applications (11 of which requested TIFIA funding) totaling $57 billion in funding requests. The TIGER (Grants for Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) program provides for $1.5 billion in discretionary grants to high impact transportation projects, and could fund up to $200 million in TIFIA assistance.

Applications were due on September 15. Secretary LaHood has assembled a team to expedite application review, and plans to announce grants in January 2010 – a month ahead of the statutory deadline.

The program gives ...

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Tags: Financing

In addition to the recent passage of comprehensive P3 legislation in Arizona and California, the newly created Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) has also been authorized to utilize public private partnerships for transportation projects. Provisions for design-build-operate-maintain (DBOM) and design-build-finance-operate-maintain (DBFOM) procurements are included in Senate Bill 2087, commonly known as the "Transportation Reform Act," under which MassDOT was formed. Under the Act, P3’s may be used for a new or existing highway, road ...

A recent survey conducted by KPMG International confirms what many in the infrastructure industry already knew: current infrastructure investment is insufficient to support economic growth and politics frequently influences infrastructure development in the United States.  In this global survey, KPMG surveyed 455 infrastructure executives, including 118 from the United States.

While much of the recent industry press has focused on the lack of available financing as the primary challenge to delivering infrastructure, a vast majority of the respondents indicated that ...

Nossaman LLP’s 30-plus infrastructure attorneys offer clients, colleagues, strategic partners, and industry media a wealth of practical experience, insider insight, and thoughtful analysis here on Infra Insight. We blog about what we know best, from industry-leading procurements to local and national policy developments that affect the market and our clients.

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