Public Finance

Unstable economies, public scrutiny of expenditures and legislative changes increase construction costs, reduce tax benefits to bond owners and impede the ability of local agencies to raise new revenue and participate in real economic growth. Faced with these challenges, local agencies require creative strategies to obtain necessary funding for new projects and to resolve troubled borrowings when needed.
 
With more than 35 years of experience, Best Best & Krieger LLP’s nationally recognized Public Finance practice group has acted as bond, disclosure and underwriter’s counsel in financings for public agencies throughout California. Our firm has closed more than $1 billion a year in par value in recent years. We are California’s leading bond counsel, having handled more than 25 percent of all transactions in California for which bond counsel was used. We are renowned for creative public finance solutions for construction projects and acquiring new public infrastructure. We are also highly regarded for our success in restructuring troubled debt, enabling underperforming assets to achieve value and pay debt service.
 
Diverse Experience
BB&K attorneys advise on a wide range of public projects from idea inception through design, finance, construction, project completion and dispute resolution. Our Public Finance team can handle every detail relating to the authorization, sale and delivery of public securities. Whether for roads or highways, schools, parks and playgrounds, housing or water supply conservation or wastewater facilities, our attorneys have extensive experience in all types of financing structures, including short-term and long-term borrowing, fixed- or variable-rate obligations and derivatives.
 
We are also very experienced in financings under the Marks Roos and Mello Roos acts to optimize public finance opportunities.
 
Leaders in the Energy Sector
We serve as bond counsel for Western Riverside Council of Governments, which runs the HERO Program for energy-efficiency improvements and products for homes and businesses. We are well known for our work in negotiating, structuring and documenting tax-exempt and taxable financings for local agencies’ renewable energy projects. Additionally, we are bond counsel to two local public agencies issuing bonds under the Property Assessed Clean Energy Program. 
 
Backed by one of California’s largest and most experienced Municipal Law practices, we possess the comprehensive knowledge required to overcome the hurdles public agencies face and we have the experience necessary to assist them in meeting their public finance needs.
 

Priscilla W. Anderson

Priscilla W. Anderson

Paralegal*

(619) 525-1355

Areas of Focus: Education Law | Public Finance
Lauri A. Arrowsmith

Lauri A. Arrowsmith

Of Counsel

(949) 263-6564

Areas of Focus: Education Law | Education Litigation | Public Finance | Special Education
Kimberly A. Byrens

Kimberly A. Byrens

Partner

(951) 826-8273

Areas of Focus: Business Services & School Facilities | Education | Municipal Law | Public Finance | School Finances, Developer Fees & Mitigation
Warren B. Diven

Warren B. Diven

Partner

(619) 525-1337

Areas of Focus: Fees, Taxes & Assessments | General & Special Counsel | Municipal Law | Public Finance
Guillermo A. Frias

Guillermo A. Frias

Of Counsel

(213) 787-2575

Areas of Focus: Eminent Domain | Environmental Law & Natural Resources | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Public Finance | Special Districts
Mary P. Karlson

Mary P. Karlson

Paralegal*

(951) 826-8249

Areas of Focus: Public Finance
Lutfi Kharuf

Lutfi Kharuf

Associate

(213) 787-2550

Areas of Focus: Fees, Taxes & Assessments | Public Finance | Special Districts
Nora O'Brien

Nora O'Brien

Associate

(619) 525-1357

Areas of Focus: Education | Municipal | Public Finance | Special Districts
William J. Priest

William J. Priest

Of Counsel

(909) 483-6648

Areas of Focus: Elections | Fees, Taxes & Assessments | Government Policy & Public Integrity | Municipal Law | Public Contracts & Construction
John R. Rottschaefer

John R. Rottschaefer

Partner

(951) 826-8275

Areas of Focus: Public Finance
Kelly J. Salt

Kelly J. Salt

Partner

(619) 525-1375

Areas of Focus: Municipal Law | Public Finance | Special Districts | Water
Mrunal M. Shah

Mrunal M. Shah

Of Counsel

(951) 826-8259

Areas of Focus: Fees, Taxes & Assessments | Municipal Law | Public Finance | School Finances, Developer Fees & Mitigation
Harriet A. Steiner

Harriet A. Steiner

Partner

(916) 551-2821

Areas of Focus: Environmental Law & Natural Resources | Fees, Taxes & Assessments | Municipal Law | Public Agency Litigation | Telecommunications
Event Oct 13, 2017

Cannabis Law Forum

2017 CMRTA Annual Conference

Event Sep 26-27, 2017

Growth: The Leadership Conference for Special Districts

2017 CSDA Annual Conference

RCTC Secures TIFIA Funds for Important Highway Infrastructure Project
Client Successes Aug 14, 2017

RCTC Secures TIFIA Funds for Important Highway Infrastructure Project

BB&K Advised on $152.2 Million TIFIA Loan

Surcharge on Utility Users Imposed Under a Franchise Agreement is Not a Tax
Legal Alerts Jul 5, 2017

Surcharge on Utility Users Imposed Under a Franchise Agreement is Not a Tax

California Supreme Court Holds Surcharge for Franchise Rights Not Subject to Voter Approval if Reasonably Related to Value of Franchise

No Mandatory Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies for Proposition 218 Challenge
Legal Alerts Jun 19, 2017

No Mandatory Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies for Proposition 218 Challenge

California Court of Appeal Allows Challenge to Prop. 218 Without Public Protest

Non-Property Owners in Cities and Counties May Now Sue for Wasteful Government Spending
Legal Alerts Jun 16, 2017

Non-Property Owners in Cities and Counties May Now Sue for Wasteful Government Spending

California Supreme Court Decision Widens Potential Claimant Pool

New Filing Deadline for JPAs Approaches
Legal Alerts Jun 14, 2017

New Filing Deadline for JPAs Approaches

JPAs Providing Municipal Services Must File with LAFCOs by July 1

U.S. Supreme Court Declines to Review a Legal Challenge to Mello-Roos Special Taxes
Legal Alerts May 31, 2017

U.S. Supreme Court Declines to Review a Legal Challenge to Mello-Roos Special Taxes

Funding Mechanism for “Additional Services” for New Development Remains

Partners Michelle Ouellette and Kelly Salt Named Top Women Lawyers
Press Releases May 25, 2017

Partners Michelle Ouellette and Kelly Salt Named Top Women Lawyers

Daily Journal’s Annual List of California’s Best Female Attorneys

Event May 9-12, 2017

One Water, One Future

ACWA's 2017 Spring Conference & Exhibition

Event Apr 12, 2017

Structuring Conservation-Based Rates Under Current California Law

CA-NV AWWA's 2017 Spring Conference

School Districts not Exempt from Paying Assessments to Fund Flood Control Services
Legal Alerts Apr 10, 2017

School Districts not Exempt from Paying Assessments to Fund Flood Control Services

California Appellate Court Finds Constitutional Mandate Supersedes Statutory Exemption

Event Mar 15, 2017

Proposition 26, Proposition 218 and Rate Setting (Oakland)

California Special Districts Association

Event Feb 23, 2017

Proposition 26, Proposition 218 and Rate Setting (Vista)

California Special Districts Association

Event Jan 12, 2017

Ensuring the Financial Health of Your Utility After California's Historic Drought

Rate Workshop Hosted by Raftelis Financial Consultants, Inc. (Oakland)

Event Jan 11, 2017

Ensuring the Financial Health of Your Utility After California's Historic Drought

Rate Workshop Hosted by Raftelis Financial Consultants, Inc. (Sacramento)

Transient Occupancy (Hotel) Taxes May be Limited by Ruling
Legal Alerts Dec 14, 2016

Transient Occupancy (Hotel) Taxes May be Limited by Ruling

Online Booking Rates Addressed by California Supreme Court

Hillsborough Residents File Suit Over Water Rates
BB&K In the News Dec 2, 2016

Hillsborough Residents File Suit Over Water Rates

Rates Comply with Law, BB&K Partner Kelly Salt Tells East Bay Times

Kimberly A. Byrens Video Bio
Videos Nov 18, 2016

Kimberly A. Byrens Video Bio

Partner

William J. Priest Video Bio
Videos Nov 18, 2016

William J. Priest Video Bio

Of Counsel

Drought Policies, Price of Water Lands in Court
BB&K In the News Nov 17, 2016

Drought Policies, Price of Water Lands in Court

Hillsborough, Represented by BB&K Attorney Kimberly Hood, Faces Suit from Residents

New Laws of 2017 Series Part I: Parcel Taxes and Property Related Fees
Authored Articles & Publications Nov 8, 2016

New Laws of 2017 Series Part I: Parcel Taxes and Property Related Fees

CSDA Series Kicks Off With Analysis by BB&K Attorney Lutfi Kharuf

Event Nov 2, 2016

Intro Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Finance Course

Council of Development Finance Agencies Training Institute

In Yorba Linda, the Race for Water District Board is Getting Ugly
BB&K In the News Oct 26, 2016

In Yorba Linda, the Race for Water District Board is Getting Ugly

KPCC Interviews BB&K Partner Kelly Salt on Water Agency Issues

Financing Increased Demand On Pre-Existing Services Constitutes “Additional Services”
Legal Alerts Oct 24, 2016

Financing Increased Demand On Pre-Existing Services Constitutes “Additional Services”

California Court Decision Rules on Mello-Roos Community Facilities Act of 1982

Event Oct 10-13, 2016

California Special Districts Association

Annual Conference

Event Oct 6, 2016

Ensuring the Financial Health of Your Utility After California's Historic Drought

Rate Workshop Hosted by Raftelis Financial Consultants, Inc.

Press Releases Oct 5, 2016

Two BB&K Partners Named Among 100 Influential Leaders in San Diego

Partners Warren B. Diven and Shawn D. Hagerty Recognized by The Daily Transcript

New Legislation Impacts Special Parcel Taxes, Community Facilities Districts, and Notices for Property-Related Fees
Legal Alerts Sep 22, 2016

New Legislation Impacts Special Parcel Taxes, Community Facilities Districts, and Notices for Property-Related Fees

Public Agencies Must Comply Beginning Jan. 1

Legislation Establishes New Reporting Requirements for State and Local Debt Obligations
Legal Alerts Sep 14, 2016

Legislation Establishes New Reporting Requirements for State and Local Debt Obligations

Annual Reports Filed with the California Debt and Investment Advisory Commission Must Include Additional Information

Bill Addresses Excessive Water Use by Some California Urban Retail Water Purveyors
Legal Alerts Sep 12, 2016

Bill Addresses Excessive Water Use by Some California Urban Retail Water Purveyors

Tiered Water Rates and Surcharges Among Tools Agencies Can Use During Water Shortages

Event May 20, 2016

Rate Setting & District Finances

Ninth Annual OC Water Summit

Event May 18, 2016

Proposition 218 Roundtable

University of California, Irvine School of Law

Event May 4, 2016

Adopting Conservation-Based Water Rates That Meet Proposition 218 Requirements

League of California Cities' City Attorney Spring Conference

Statute Authorizing Transfer of Local Taxes as Penalty is Unconstitutional
Legal Alerts Mar 7, 2016

Statute Authorizing Transfer of Local Taxes as Penalty is Unconstitutional

California Appellate Court Ruling on Proposition 22

Event Feb 9, 2016

Proposition 26, Proposition 218 & Rate Setting

California Special Districts Association

Structuring Tiered Water Rates Under Conflicting Court Decisions: Interpreting the California Constitution
Authored Articles & Publications Jan 7, 2016

Structuring Tiered Water Rates Under Conflicting Court Decisions: Interpreting the California Constitution

Partner Kelly Salt Writes About Tiered Rates in the January 2016 American Water Works Association Journal

California Appellate Court Holds Groundwater Pumping Fees are Property-Related Fees Subject to Prop. 218
Legal Alerts Dec 9, 2015

California Appellate Court Holds Groundwater Pumping Fees are Property-Related Fees Subject to Prop. 218

Decision Conflicts with a Separate Appellate Court Decision to be Considered by the California Supreme Court

California Appellate Court Addresses Lease-Back Financing Plan to Fund Public Infrastructure Improvements
Legal Alerts Dec 9, 2015

California Appellate Court Addresses Lease-Back Financing Plan to Fund Public Infrastructure Improvements

Court Finds Plan Does Not Violate Requirement that Municipal Indebtedness be Approved by a Two-Thirds Vote of the Electorate

A Tax Ruling Could Complicate California’s Effort to Battle the Drought
BB&K In the News Sep 29, 2015

A Tax Ruling Could Complicate California’s Effort to Battle the Drought

BB&K Partner Kelly Salt Discusses Capistrano Case With the American Bar Association Journal

California Supreme Court Denies Requests to Depublish San Juan Capistrano Case
Legal Alerts Jul 23, 2015

California Supreme Court Denies Requests to Depublish San Juan Capistrano Case

Action Means the Closely Watched Tiered Water Rate Case Is Final

California Department of Water Resources Adopts Update to the Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance
Legal Alerts Jul 22, 2015

California Department of Water Resources Adopts Update to the Model Water Efficient Landscape Ordinance

Cities and Counties Will be Required to Update their Existing Water Efficient Landscape Ordinances or Otherwise be Subject to the New Model Ordinance

Event Jul 20, 2015

Dealing With the Drought: State Water Resources Control Board (WRCB) Mandatory Water Consumption Reduction Measures

Law Seminars International

California Supreme Court Grants Review in San Buenaventura Groundwater Pumping Fees Case
Legal Alerts Jun 25, 2015

California Supreme Court Grants Review in San Buenaventura Groundwater Pumping Fees Case

Appellate Court Decision Held that the Pumping Fee is Subject to Prop. 26 and is not a Property-Related Fee Subject to Prop. 218

Drought Bill To Combat Water Shortages Passes In California Legislature
Legal Alerts Jun 23, 2015

Drought Bill To Combat Water Shortages Passes In California Legislature

Measure Would Allow Forced Consolidation Of Water Suppliers, Large Civil Fines

Event Jun 15-16, 2015

California Water Law & Policy Conference

Argent Communications Group

City’s Revenue Transfer From its Wastewater Utility to its General Fund Is Justified
Legal Alerts Jun 4, 2015

City’s Revenue Transfer From its Wastewater Utility to its General Fund Is Justified

California Appellate Court Holds that Transfer Did Not Violate Proposition 218

Event May 26, 2015

Webinar: Regulations for Small Systems

Association of California Water Agencies

State Water Resources Control Board Adopts Emergency Water Restrictions Throughout California
Legal Alerts May 7, 2015

State Water Resources Control Board Adopts Emergency Water Restrictions Throughout California

Sweeping Regulations Expected to Take Effect by May 15

San Juan Capistrano Tiered Water-Use Rates Decision
BB&K In the News Apr 21, 2015

San Juan Capistrano Tiered Water-Use Rates Decision

BB&K Partner Kelly Salt Interviewed on Capistrano Taxpayers Association v. City of San Juan Capistrano

California Court of Appeal Holds City’s Tiered Water Rate Structure Violates Proposition 218
Legal Alerts Apr 21, 2015

California Court of Appeal Holds City’s Tiered Water Rate Structure Violates Proposition 218

But City May Charge Potable Customers for the Costs of Developing Alternative Supply Projects, Such as Recycled Water

Draft Mandatory Regulations Restricting Water Use in California Released by State Water Resources Control Board
Legal Alerts Apr 20, 2015

Draft Mandatory Regulations Restricting Water Use in California Released by State Water Resources Control Board

Expanded Tiering System; Next Round of Comments Due Wednesday

Proposed Framework for Mandatory Water Use Reductions in California Released
Legal Alerts Apr 8, 2015

Proposed Framework for Mandatory Water Use Reductions in California Released

Fast Track Ahead for Emergency Regulations

One Way to Ration Water: Raise the Price
BB&K In the News Apr 8, 2015

One Way to Ration Water: Raise the Price

BB&K Partner Kelly Salt Discusses the Economics of Water Use With National Public Radio's Marketplace

Two California Appellate Court Rulings Demonstrate that Groundwater Pumping Fees are in the Eye of the Beholder
Legal Alerts Mar 31, 2015

Two California Appellate Court Rulings Demonstrate that Groundwater Pumping Fees are in the Eye of the Beholder

One Holds that the Fee is Subject to Prop. 26 and Another that it is a Property-Related Fee Subject to Prop. 218

ACWA Legislative Symposium Looks at Groundwater, Prop. 218
BB&K In the News Mar 20, 2015

ACWA Legislative Symposium Looks at Groundwater, Prop. 218

BB&K Managing Partner Eric Garner Moderated a Panel Discussion on Key Water Issues Being Addressed by California Lawmakers

California’s State Water Resources Control Board Renews and Imposes Stricter Emergency Water Conservation Regulations
Legal Alerts Mar 17, 2015

California’s State Water Resources Control Board Renews and Imposes Stricter Emergency Water Conservation Regulations

Limits on Outdoor Irrigation and New Reporting Requirements Included to Address Ongoing Drought

Legal Options for Water Providers in Times of Drought
BB&K In the News Mar 17, 2015

Legal Options for Water Providers in Times of Drought

BB&K Partner Kelly Salt Discusses at a Workshop, as Reported by Maven's Notebook, the Laws That Are of Concern to Water Agencies and Localities as They Consider Financial Impacts During the Drought

Press Releases Mar 4, 2015

Six BB&K Attorneys Named Top Lawyers in San Diego

San Diego Magazine Picks Attorneys from a Variety of Practices for its List

Court Strikes Down Surcharge on Utility Users Imposed Under a Franchise Agreement
Legal Alerts Mar 3, 2015

Court Strikes Down Surcharge on Utility Users Imposed Under a Franchise Agreement

Surcharge Collected for General Revenue Purposes Under a Franchise Agreement must be Approved by Voters

Press Releases Feb 18, 2015

BB&K Attorneys Garner Top Verdict Recognition

Jeff Dunn, Thomas Eastmond and Steven DeBaun Recognized by the Daily Journal for WRCOG v. Beaumont

Transfer of Electric Utility Revenues to City’s General Fund is a Tax under Prop. 26
Legal Alerts Jan 22, 2015

Transfer of Electric Utility Revenues to City’s General Fund is a Tax under Prop. 26

Payment in Lieu of Taxes Increased After the Adoption of Proposition 26 is not Grandfathered-In

Local Agencies that Can Recover Fees Through Prop 218 Process are Ineligible for State Reimbursements
Legal Alerts Jan 8, 2015

Local Agencies that Can Recover Fees Through Prop 218 Process are Ineligible for State Reimbursements

Decision from the Commission on State Mandates

Authored Articles & Publications Oct 27, 2014

High-Speed Rail Isn't Full Steam Ahead Just Yet

BB&K Attorneys Mrunal Mehta Shah and Sarah Owsowitz Discuss Legal Roadblocks on the Tracks of California's High-Speed Rail Project in the Daily Journal

Event Oct 22, 2014

Propositions 218 and 26 Keeping You Awake at Night? Setting Utility Rates Without Counting Sheep

American Water Works Association California-Nevada

Stormwater Management Services That Provide a Water Supply Source May Be Funded With Water Service
Legal Alerts Sep 10, 2014

Stormwater Management Services That Provide a Water Supply Source May Be Funded With Water Service

New Legislation Defines Water for Purposes of Proposition 218 to Include Water from Any Source

Best Best & Krieger Launches BBKnowledge
Press Releases Jan 22, 2014

Best Best & Krieger Launches BBKnowledge

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