Hawkins has provided over 50 years of public finance legal services to the State of Connecticut as well as its cities, towns and public authorities. The Firm’s first assignment was the development of the legislation for the financing of the Connecticut Turnpike. Thompson Reuters has consistently ranked the Firm first among bond counsel in Connecticut for more than two decades.
In addition to having served as Bond Counsel to the State, we have served as Bond Counsel to the Connecticut Development Authority, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority, Connecticut Health and Educational Facilities Authority, Connecticut Student Loan Foundation, Connecticut Resources Recovery Authority and the University of Connecticut. Hawkins has served as bond counsel, underwriter’s counsel and special counsel for numerous Connecticut municipalities. In addition to providing full services as bond counsel to these communities on a regular basis, our representation has included special assignments such as drafting the legislation for the special obligation transportation bond program following the collapse of the Mianus Bridge and more recently for the Adriaen’s Landing convention center, as well as the UConn foodball stadium; drafting the legislation and serving as Bond Counsel to the State in providing assistance to distressed municipalities; preparing legislation that authorizes tax stabilization agreements with electric generating facility owners; and assisting communities in connection with several economic development projects.
The following summarizes certain of our recent activities in Connecticut:
State of Connecticut General Obligation Bonds
Hawkins has served as Bond Counsel to the State of Connecticut for over 50 years. In addition, the Firm served as tax counsel to the State from the time that role was created in 1995 through 2000. Hawkins performed the tax analysis and prepared the tax regulatory agreements, tax questionnaires and cross-reliance opinions for each of the State’s general obligation bond issues. Prior to that time, on an informal basis, the Firm had been responsible for the coordination of the tax analyses of the State’s various bond counsel firms as well as for the tax documentation for all State general obligation issues. Hawkins was also the principal architect of the State’s first official statement.
State of Connecticut Special Assignments
In recent years, Hawkins has continued to be the firm most frequently called upon by the State for the creation and implementation of innovative financing techniques, such as the Special Assessment Unemployment Compensation Advance Fund Revenue Bond Program, Second Injury Fund Program, the UConn 2000 bond program, electric rate reduction legislation, tax increment incentives for stadiums and exhibition facilities, and financings incorporating derivative products.
Hawkins Delafield & Wood LLP drafted the legislation for the one billion dollar, ten-year University of Connecticut UConn 2000 capital improvement program in 1995 and served as Bond Counsel for each series of general obligation and special revenue bonds for UConn 2000 through 2002. This was the first multi-year capital improvement program to be implemented in the State and the first such program for a flagship university of any state. The Firm’s expertise was essential in successfully bringing this new credit to market. The success of this program is evidenced the legislature’s approval to extend the program for an additional eleven years.
Cities and Towns
Hawkins in recent years has expanded its representation of Connecticut cities and towns, adding resident, full time attorneys in the Hartford office since 1997, specializing primarily in the issuance of general obligation debt in Connecticut. The Firm drafted the Town and City Development Act and currently serves as bond counsel or underwriter’s counsel on financings of towns, cities and school districts in the state.
Hawkins served as Bond Counsel on a $37 million New Haven’s Route 34 Air Rights Parking Facility Revenue Bond issue which involved a major reconstruction of an air rights garage and we served as underwriter’s counsel in connection with the refunding of the bonds. The bonds were secured by parking leases and other security.
Electric Generating Facilities
When a developer proposed to construct a 512-megawatt electric generating facility, the Firm's experience with the development and construction of similar facilities across the nation enabled the Firm to provide our client with expertise as to valuation, construction and operation issues uniquely related to these types of facilities that permitted the negotiation of tax and related agreements. We also drafted the legislation necessary to validate such agreements.
When a client elected to sell an issue of advance refunding bonds on a competitive basis, not previously done in Connecticut, the Firm's extensive experience with similar transactions in other states enabled Hawkins to offer advice and appropriate documentation with respect to federal tax issues arising under such transactions. Similarly, our experience with recent technological innovations such as internet offerings, including the expertise of partners in our other offices with respect to federal securities law issues arising in connection with such offerings, predated and exceeded the experience of any other Connecticut law firm.
Hawkins Delafield & Wood LLP has assisted in the procurement and negotiations for economic development projects in a number of Connecticut towns, including shopping centers, wastewater treatment plants and research facilities, as well as related housing, infrastructure and parking. These projects have involved traditional financing means as well as tax increment bonds.
Hawkins has provided service to virtually all of the public financing authorities in Connecticut. We drafted the legislation that created Connecticut Development Authority and Connecticut Housing Finance Authority and have served as a Bond Counsel to those entities since their creation. In addition, we served as a Bond Counsel for many years to Connecticut Resources Recovery Authority, including for the initial financings and contract negotiations with the selected vendor for each of its waste-to-energy projects for its Mid Connecticut Project servicing the Greater Hartford Region, and since 1994, to the Connecticut Student Loan Foundation. Recent representation has included drafting the legislation and serving as Bond Counsel for the new child care facilities financing program for Connecticut Health and Educational Facilities Authority, which has become a national model for the financing of day care facilities, and for the special needs housing program of the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority.