Special Financing Districts

Formation

New sources of revenue.

Inadequate revenue streams and competing demands for them make it hard for cities, counties, schools, and special districts to provide all the services and infrastructure their citizens desire. That’s where Special Financing Districts (SFDs) come in.

Special Financing District Formation & Consulting Services

We have decades of hands-on experience with virtually every type of special assessment, special tax, and fee. That’s the experience we bring to the design and formation of new SFDs. We partner with our clients to craft new forms of revenue for public-sector initiatives. We work to define each project and budget, as well as set benchmarks and communication expectations that help drive positive results.

We partner with local agencies as the “Assessment Engineer” to navigate challenges in the setup and formation of new Assessment Districts. We develop sustainable Engineer’s Reports that identify the parcels and assign the assessable benefits. We also prepare and track the assessment ballots.

 

A BID offers funding resources to a targeted area to support various local improvements and services, but it is tricky to formulate the plan and assess the benefits. We focus on the common goals and develop a supportable assessment process and management plan for a viable BID.

 

Large projects funded by a bond or other type of financing may require an independent verification of the improvements and commensurate payments, and this must be done by an experienced outside party. Depending on the agreement in place, this may require on-site verification, analysis of the reimbursements, and payment requests to the fiscal agent or trustee. We work closely with our clients to develop a program that is unique to each situation.

 

Determining the most feasible course of action is daunting for local governments. With experience and creativity, we drive this prudent first step in a project by defining the alternatives and then reviewing the various perspectives and opportunities associated with each course of action.

 

Most, if not all, policy and practical public decisions will have a fiscal impact. Note that a fiscal impact is generally defined as the net cost or benefit of a decision. We provide analysis to support the important decisions about how these fiscal impacts will affect others in the community as well as other public agencies.

The most prudent first step in a project is first defining the alternatives and then reviewing the various perspectives and opportunities associated with each course of action. Feasibility and Analyses will drive the succeeding processes and result in the most useful and workable outcome for all concerned.

 

Boundary Maps, which typically show the boundary of a district with required certifications and Assessment Diagrams, are more detailed documents that show every parcel within the special district as well as legal certifications. We provide such mapping and GIS support services in many ways.

 

Revenues don’t always work as designed. We provide many types of reviews and audits for local governmental agencies to ensure that the maximize legal revenues are achieved.

 

Proposition 218 has challenged local governments since its passage in 1996. We have been at the forefront of this area since then, consulting public agencies of all sizes on the application of it. We may advise on related public outreach, notices and ballots, and overall proactive compliance with the law.

 

Reassessment Engineering is a specialized form of Assessment Engineering and financial analysis required when an assessment district is refunded or refinanced: It is a complicated and multi-faceted process. We’ve been deeply involved as the Reassessment Engineer with some of the most complex refunding projects involving many layers of pooled bonds, local obligations, and underlying special districts.

 

When the interest rate on bonds significantly exceeds the current interest rate environment, many public agencies are interested in refunding the higher rate bonds. We offer expert analysis and support for such refundings.

 

Some needs just can’t be supported without a special tax. A Community Facilities District Tax (“Mello-Roos”) or a Parcel Tax can support public safety, schools, parks, and infrastructure projects. Acting as Special Tax Consultant, we choose the best type of tax and enact the best structure.

 

We've Served...

and many more…

Client Case Studies

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Business Improvement District (BID) Expansion and Renewal – Yerba Buena Community Benefit District (CBD)
April 20, 2017

Business Improvement District (BID) Expansion and Renewal – Yerba Buena Community Benefit District (CBD)

The Yerba Buena CBD, a property-based BID, is an integral part of San Francisco’s lively South of Market Area, known to many as SOMA. This area has gone through a dramatic transformation with significant increases in residents, hotel guests, office workers, museumgoers, diners and nightlife patrons. This is all in…

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SFD Formation – City of Burlingame, Downtown Burlingame Avenue
December 2, 2016

SFD Formation – City of Burlingame, Downtown Burlingame Avenue

Burlingame Avenue is a quaint yet vital downtown district on the San Francisco Peninsula, with local restaurants, boutiques, and well-known retail stores. Sales and values per square foot are very high. The Avenue had not been renovated for decades, and everything from the underground utilities to sidewalks to street furniture…

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Landscape Maintenance District and Community Facilities District Formation and Administration – Valley-Wide Recreation and Park District
April 20, 2017

Landscape Maintenance District and Community Facilities District Formation and Administration – Valley-Wide Recreation and Park District

The Valley-Wide Recreation and Park District serves a very large area in Riverside County. They provide many services for dozens of parks and other facilities over hundreds of square miles, reflecting many diverse communities, as well as new development areas. This undertaking requires support, expertise and continuous effort to bring…

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Administration

Increase your efficiency.

Handling the administration for Special Financing Districts requires significant time and a level of expertise that you may not have. The workload is piling up and you don’t have the staff on hand to meet the demand. NBS can provide valuable support and advice to help save time, money, and resources.

Special Financing District Annual Administration

Our team at NBS is ready to help you with your specific administration needs and walk with you every step of the way. As the most tenured group of SFD administrators, we provide comprehensive annual administration, management, and compliance services. Our cost-effective approach and proprietary software helps municipalities minimize risk, ensure accuracy, and save time and money.

Comprehensive annual management of SFDs includes parcel management, funds tracking, calculations of taxes and assessments, customer service response via toll-free phone, email and mail, annual reporting, governing body presentations, and a wealth of complementary services mentioned here.

Proper management of parcel changes within an assessment district requires diligent effort, or the assessment lien may no longer be valid. We provide comprehensive apportionment services, including providing applications, mapping and diagramming, reporting, lien recordations, etc. We facilitate both the application and hearing method modes.

 

For most tax-exempt bonds, complex arbitrage calculations are necessary for compliance with IRS regulations. We offer those services, through BLX Group LLC, a subsidiary of the law firm of Orrick. Each report is accompanied by a legal opinion.

 

Many types of SFD bonds require bond calls throughout the life of the bonds. We proactively develop a process for this which includes the calculation of funds available for a bond call, selection of the appropriate bond maturities, coordination with the trustee, fiscal, and paying agents, and updating of debt service schedules.

 

Tendering bonds within a stressed SFD requires experience, and a “steady hand.” We support our clients in developing a bond tender policy, acting as the primary contact for the property owner and interested parties, coordinating the Letters of Intent and facilitating the actual bond tender.

 

Large projects funded by a bond or other type of financing may require an independent verification of the improvements and commensurate payments, and this must be done by an experienced outside party. Depending on the agreement in place, this may require on-site verification, analysis of the reimbursements, and payment requests to the fiscal agent or trustee. We work closely with our clients to develop a program that is unique to each situation.

 

Compliance with continuing disclosure for bonds, in compliance with Federal requirements (“Rule 15c2-12”), should be a significant concern for any municipality which has issued debt. We develop a process for our clients to ensure such disclosure is regularly and consistently provided, and then we provide the analysis, preparation and dissemination of all types of disclosure reports.

 

If costs associated with the various types of Special Financing Districts are not annually recovered, those funds are lost forever. We work closely with our clients to ensure that these costs are correctly reviewed and then spread to the SFD’s and then the individual parcels, in accordance with established procedures and relevant legal statutes.

 

Managing SFD delinquencies takes expertise, time and attention to detail: If not done properly, a municipality opens itself up to noncompliance with its covenants and could lose significant revenues. We develop a comprehensive program for delinquency management, and can support most all facets of delinquency tracking, calculations of penalties and interest, correspondence and follow up.

 

SFD’s often have many funds and detailed rules as to how revenues are to be accounted for. We independently review and analyze those funds, and make recommendations to resolve any issues.

 

Parcels are changing all year long, and it’s a basic need to stay abreast of such changes within an SFD. If not, there is an enormous potential to lose revenue and a proper lien thereto. To ensure that all changes in parcel information are documented accurately, we proactively track all parcel changes and maintain historical parcel change data.

 

Many SFD’s have provisions for prepayment of all or a portion of the obligation. Performing these prepayment calculations is not easy, and there is a real potential for error. We understand the complex rules and practices of amortizations and prepayment formulae, and can support our clients in ensuring both the calculations are done appropriately and all follow up (release of a lien, bond call, etc.) is completed.

 

We've Served...

and many more…

Client Case Studies

View All Case Studies
Landscape Maintenance District and Community Facilities District Formation and Administration – Valley-Wide Recreation and Park District
April 20, 2017

Landscape Maintenance District and Community Facilities District Formation and Administration – Valley-Wide Recreation and Park District

The Valley-Wide Recreation and Park District serves a very large area in Riverside County. They provide many services for dozens of parks and other facilities over hundreds of square miles, reflecting many diverse communities, as well as new development areas. This undertaking requires support, expertise and continuous effort to bring…

Learn more
SFD Administration – East Bay Park District
November 30, 2015

SFD Administration – East Bay Park District

NBS provides administration services for the many special assessment and special tax districts encompassed by the East Bay Regional Park District. This Park District is one of the largest of its kind in the country. To add to the complexity, it also has some of the largest parcel count special…

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SFD Administration – Salt Lake Valley Law Enforcement Service Area
March 27, 2016

SFD Administration – Salt Lake Valley Law Enforcement Service Area

NBS was retained by the County of Salt Lake to provide billing, mailing, collecting, and administrative functions for the establishment of the Salt Lake Valley Law Enforcement Service Area (SLVLESA). The SLVLESA would cover more than 43,000 property owners and 2,000 businesses. Like many public agencies during this recession, the…

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Senior Management Analyst, City of Pomona
You went above and beyond as a consultant with assisting the City through a difficult Proposition 218 process. You were always available to provide valuable insight, analysis, and technical information to the City and at Community meetings, whenever and wherever called upon. We greatly appreciate the level of expertise NBS provided.
Property Tax Specialist at County of Napa
NBS really knows about special assessments. Reliable information. Good people to work with. We very much appreciate the prompt response to questions, requests for information, understanding of a code section, etc.