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Elizabeth M. Columbo



Liz Columbo represents governments and public authorities, issuers, underwriters, financial institutions, and investors on tax-exempt and taxable financings for a variety of public infrastructure projects, with an emphasis on public power, transportation, multi-family housing facilities, and stadiums and arenas. She also advises clients with respect to regulatory developments and disclosure practices.

What do you focus on?

Today I focus my practice on four main sectors, leveraging more than 20 years of experience to help clients manage their most complex transactions.

Public Power

Much of my work involves serving as bond counsel, disclosure counsel, or underwriters’ counsel on financings for public power clients across the country, including the Florida Municipal Power Agency, South Carolina Public Service Authority (Santee Cooper), JEA (Jacksonville, Florida), the Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Company, Long Island Power Authority, Nebraska Public Power District, and the Power Authority of the State of New York, among others. My work includes public offerings, private placements and 144A financings, system and project financings, tax-exempt and taxable financings, secured and unsecured debt, senior and subordinated debt, fixed-rate and variable-rate debt, and derivatives. I have experience drafting disclosure documents, financing agreements, resolutions and trust indentures, escrow agreements, forward purchase and bond purchase contracts, letters of credit, continuing disclosure documents, and interest rate exchange agreements.

Transportation

I have worked as bond counsel or disclosure counsel for the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) and the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority for over 25 years, including on the MTA’s landmark $17.32 billion bond restructuring program. I take pride in my ability to work as a team with my colleagues in the Public Finance group on transportation projects funded in whole or part by federal grants and loans, including Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) loans, federal highway trust fund moneys, and full funding grant agreements.

Stadiums and Arenas

I am experienced representing governmental as well as private entities in tax-exempt and taxable debt financings involving the National Football League (NFL), Major League Baseball (MLB), and National Basketball Association (NBA) teams and their stadiums and arenas. This experience includes work on the stadium financings for the Yankees, Mets, Giants, Jets, Twins, and Nets and representation of the County of Erie, New York, in connection with the Buffalo Bills lease and related Ralph Wilson stadium renovations and the County of Loudoun, Virginia, in connection with the Loudoun United FC lease and soccer facilities financing.

Multi-family Housing Facilities

I represent multi-family housing facilities in various financings, including the New York City Industrial Development Agency and the New York State Housing Finance Agency. My experience includes tax-exempt commercial paper programs; variable, auction-rate, and option bonds; multiple forms of revenue bond financings, including many supported by various types of credit facilities; debt restructurings; pooled loan transactions; and derivative products, such as interest rate swaps.

Disclosure and Compliance

I spend a significant portion of my practice advising clients on regulatory developments and their compliance requirements. We serve as disclosure counsel (and often in our role as bond counsel) for some of the largest issuers of municipal debt throughout the United States and regularly advise clients with respect to their primary and secondary market disclosure responsibilities. I currently serve as counsel to the Bond Dealers of America, tracking all regulatory and practice developments within the municipal markets, drafting comments to regulatory organizations regarding regulatory developments, and preparing memoranda and other communications to assist municipal market professionals.

What do you see on the horizon?

Increasing regulatory, investigative, and enforcement actions, designed to improve disclosure and increase transparency in the municipal securities market, will continue to impact all municipal market participants. I follow these actions closely to educate our clients about the implications of these actions and advise them of their changing disclosure and compliance responsibilities so they can avoid being targeted by regulators.

Presentations

  • “Issuer Disclosure Requirements for Selling ESG, Sustainable Bonds,” BondLink & Nixon Peabody's At the Forefront of ESG, Social Media, and COVID-19 Disclosures Conference, June 10, 2021
  • “Disclosures and due diligence obligations during the COVID-19 crisis,” presentation to Indianapolis Bond Bank, May 22, 2020

Santee Cooper OKs bond deal oversubscribed more than five times

The Bond Buyer | October 28, 2020

This article on Santee Cooper’s revenue and refunding bond deal, which drew $3.5 billion in orders from investors, mentions the firm for New York Project Finance & Public Finance partner Liz Columbo’s work representing the South Carolina-owned utility company as bond and disclosure counsel.

Contact

Elizabeth M. Columbo

Partner

New York

Phone: 212-940-3183


Fax: 866-947-2264

Brooklyn Law School, J.D., 1994

Fordham University, B.A.

New York

New Jersey

Liz has been recognized as a “Super Lawyer” in the New York Metro since 2018 for her work in Government Finance.

She is a member of the New York State Bar Association and the National Association of Bond Lawyers.
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