For Immediate Release - November 07, 2011

Massachusetts a Finalist in Bond Buyer's "Deal of The Year" Award

Trade Publication Recognizes Innovative Financing for Accelerated Bridge Program

Treasurer Steven Grossman and the Patrick-Murray Administration today announced that Massachusetts has been named one of five finalists for The Bond Buyer’s “Deal of the Year Award” due to the innovative financing used to help fund the Massachusetts Department of Transportation’s (MassDOT) Accelerated Bridge Program.

“Taxpayers have a right to expect that we will protect their money and maximize value at all times,” said Treasurer Grossman.  “This independent recognition by The Bond Buyer demonstrates the creative thinking behind the Commonwealth’s approach to infrastructure financing and the ability of government to be fast, flexible and entrepreneurial.”

“The Patrick-Murray Administration’s investment in our transportation infrastructure through the Accelerated Bridge Program has made a significant impact in addressing the state of the Commonwealth’s bridges while creating thousands of jobs,” said Administration and Finance Secretary Jay Gonzalez.  “It is exciting that The Bond Buyer has recognized the innovative work being done here in Massachusetts.”

The deal recognized by The Bond Buyer was composed of three separate transactions, including a bond refinancing of outstanding transportation debt that reduced the state’s borrowing costs by more than $11 million.  Overall, the transactions generated over $676 million to finance MassDOT’s efforts to take an aggressive approach to refurbishing the Commonwealth’s bridges, some of which have been deemed structurally deficient.  In addition, one of the new-money borrowings received an AAA rating from Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s, the first time a Commonwealth financing has received such high ratings.  The transactions occurred in December of 2010.

According to The Bond Buyer, the 2011 Deal of the Year Award drew 80 nominations for transactions ranging from $5 million to several billion dollars.  One finalist was selected from five separate regions of the country, with Massachusetts capturing the top billing for the Northeast.   The entries were evaluated based on innovation, ability to effectively finance in challenging economic times, and the public purpose for which a transaction’s proceeds were used.

The Accelerated Bridge Program was created in 2008 by the Patrick-Murray Administration to significantly reduce the number of structurally deficient bridges in Massachusetts.  Since the program’s inception, 63 bridge projects have been completed, reducing the number of structurally deficient bridges in the Commonwealth by 16 percent.

The Bond Buyer is widely recognized as the preeminent news source catering to the municipal bond industry.  Published five days a week, the publication reaches more than 40,000 municipal finance professionals, bond issuers, government officials, and investors.