Land-Secured Financing

Special Tax Consulting and Assessment Engineering Services

DTA is the Nation’s leader in the provision of special tax consulting and assessment services associated with the formation of land-secured financing districts.

DTA has helped cities, counties, property owners, school districts, water districts, and other entities establish over 1,000 Mello-Roos Community Facilities Districts ("CFDs") and numerous Assessment Districts (“ADs”), Public Improvement Districts, Special Assessment Areas, Landscaping and Lighting Districts (“LLDs”), and other types of land-secured financing districts. These special districts have required either property owner or registered voter elections and provided funding for all types of infrastructure improvements, public facilities, and public services. DTA has assisted both public and private sector clients in the formation of these districts and incorporated smaller development projects in California into the Statewide Communities Infrastructure Program (“SCIP”), which pools together a series of small ADs on a Statewide basis to achieve the economies of scale typically only enjoyed by larger stand-alone financing districts. SCIP is managed by the California Statewide Communities Development Authority (“CSCDA”).

Starting in 1990, DTA expanded its land-secured financing consulting work to eight other states, specifically Arizona, Hawaii, Illinois, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Texas, and Washington. DTA's work in these states is focused on the development of special tax and special assessment apportionment formulas based on special benefit and other criteria, with the goal of maximizing funding capacity while at the same time ensuring equitable allocations of special tax or assessment burdens among future property owners. DTA's special tax and special assessment formulas are based on a variety of methodologies that have withstood the test of time. Some have been in use since 1985, with the bonds actually being retired after reaching maturity in 2015. DTA has also developed many innovative strategies that have become standards in the municipal finance industry, including the use of backup taxes, state-of-the-art prepayment formulas, and the sizing of bond issues based on a variety of debt service and special tax cash flow structures. DTA's special tax formulas have been utilized to provide debt service coverage for the sale of hundreds of land-secured bond issues and provided the firm with considerable experience working with public agencies, property owners, underwriters, bond counsels, and financial advisors to provide special tax and special assessment apportionment methods satisfactory to all parties.

Public Improvement Districts (New Mexico and Texas)

DTA is a diversified public finance consulting firm assisting developers and real estate investors with financial solutions for public infrastructure and services financing. Among its many activities, DTA is the Nation’s leading firm specializing in the use of Public Improvement Districts (“PIDs”) to finance public infrastructure, having advised developers in the use of this unique financial structure since 1985. A PID provides bond funding secured solely by special assessments levied on the land within the district. This debt is not a balance sheet or developer-guaranteed security and is non-recourse to the municipality issuing the bonds. Special assessment bond financing is a classic public-private partnership with the issuance of tax-exempt bonds to finance the public infrastructure necessary to serve new development. Today, special assessment financing is active in many states and total annual bond issuance is in excess of $1 billion.

In our opinion, PID financing has significant and measurable advantages in comparison to Municipal Utility Districts (“MUDs”). The advantages of PID financing from a developer’s perspective are summarized below.

One of the most important distinctions between a PID and a MUD is the type of improvements that can be financed. Unless granted road district powers, a MUD can only be used to finance water, sewer, and flood control facilities. Obviously, these improvements represent only a limited portion of the total improvement cost of a development. This limitation contrasts unfavorably with a PID, which can finance virtually every type of public improvement, including water, sewer, and flood control facilities, streets, sidewalks, street lighting, mass transit facilities, rights-of-way, libraries, and recreational amenities, such as public parks and landscaping.

Special District Administration

DTA offers comprehensive services to assist public agencies with the annual levy and collection of special taxes and assessments for a variety of financing districts. We are currently providing these services to more than 750 special districts. Our firm can provide our clients with a higher level of service at a lower cost than our competitors as a result of proprietary cloud-based special district administration software that we have developed over the past 10 years.

When providing special district administration consulting services, DTA takes responsibility for all data collection and compilation required to levy special taxes and assessments, as well as their enrollment with the County Auditor/Controller for inclusion on property tax bills. DTA also regularly tracks delinquent special taxes and assessments, implements collection programs, monitors bond accounts for compliance with bond indentures, performs arbitrage rebate calculations, and responds to taxpayer/property owner questions.

Bond Disclosure and Dissemination Services

DTA can undertake an Issuer's disclosure requirements under regulations promulgated by the Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and California Debt and Investment Advisory Commission. In its role as the official "Dissemination Agent" for a bond issue, DTA prepares the Annual Report for the bond issue and disseminates the Annual Report to the Electronic Municipal Market Access (“EMMA”) system and appropriate state repositories. When performing this function, DTA is responsible for the collection, calculation, and/or preparation of all statutorily required information.

DTA can also assist property owners

with preparing their Annual Reports and disseminating them to EMMA.

Fiscal or Economic Impact Analyses

Fiscal Impact Analyses

DTA staff has prepared over 700 Fiscal Impact Reports (“FIRs”)

estimating the recurring revenue and cost impacts of different land use decisions on cities, counties, and special districts. FIRs have been prepared by DTA in conjunction with specific plans, Environmental Impact Reports, incorporations and annexations, reuse studies, general plan amendments, Development Agreements, and general project proposals covering different types of residential, commercial/industrial, and mixed-use projects.

In addition to analyzing individual projects,

our firm’s FIRs may also include the fiscal analyses of land use/infrastructure alternatives, sensitivity analyses of alternative fiscal and land use assumptions, and fiscal analyses of annexation areas and subareas. DTA relies primarily on the Case Study Method of estimating impacts, which includes in-depth interviews with project proponents and public agency staff, combined with thorough analyses of public agency budgets. Additionally, DTA maintains a detailed Public Works Database that includes comparable local and regional parameters, including operations and maintenance costs, replacements and depletion costs, labor costs, staffing levels, etc., that can be applied to an individual project or model.

DTA can also propose financing solutions,

including special districts, endowment payments, and private sector funding options, to mitigate fiscal shortfalls.

Economic Impact Analyses

DTA has prepared over 250 Economic Impact Analyses (“EIAs”) to project the one-time and annual recurring economic impacts of a development project on a local economy. General economic impacts include additions to regional economic output (gross receipts or sales), earnings (the sum of wages and salaries, proprietors’ income, and other labor income), and employment (number of average annual full-time and part-time jobs created, as well as the impact on an area’s jobs/housing balance). DTA determines the indirect and induced economic impacts of a project by utilizing multipliers from reputable sources and applying them to on-site project employment estimates. DTA’s EIAs have been utilized by the State of California, local municipalities, redevelopment successor agencies, community development enterprises, landowners, and other parties to determine whether such impacts merit the granting of project entitlements or project subsidies to enable a project to move forward. They have also been used in successful applications for New Markets Tax Credits.

Tax Increment Financing

Prior to the demise of redevelopment in California in 2011, DTA’s tax increment work focused on the preparation of Fiscal Consultant Reports, which involve the preparation of detailed tax increment projections and the associated certifications necessary to support the issuance of tax allocation bonds and Certificates of Participation by California redevelopment agencies. These projections, which were prepared on behalf of numerous redevelopment agencies, counties, cities, school districts, community college districts, and other public agencies, were the basis for the sale of over $1 billion in redevelopment agency tax allocation bonds. In addition, DTA provided redevelopment consulting services related to redevelopment impact analyses, Fiscal Impact Reports (“FIRs”), economic blight analyses, project financing plans, and development feasibility analyses.

Since 2011, DTA has continued its involvement in tax increment financing by working on bond districts formed in New Mexico [Tax Increment Development Districts (“TIDDs”)], Texas [Tax Increment Reinvestment Zones (“TIRZs”)], and Nevada. In addition, the firm has recently established two Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts (“EIFDs”) in California. An EIFD is California’s current tax increment replacement for redevelopment that allows the use of increment for a portion of property tax revenues and Vehicle License Fee (“VLF”) in-lieu revenues that is more limited in magnitude than the increment previously authorized under California’s redevelopment laws.

Public Finance Program Strategies and Implementation

DTA Staff Is Experienced In The Preparation And Implementation Of Financing Strategies

and plans to fund public facilities and services for both existing land development and newly developing areas. Debt financing programs implemented by our firm range from bond issuances secured by a municipality’s General Fund to debt financings that are non-recourse to a municipality and are secured instead by a stream of special taxes, assessments, or enterprise fund revenues. DTA specializes in the creative use of non-recourse financing programs to maximize the availability of capital early in the development process and ensure the timely construction of public facilities wherever new development is occurring. This may include the use of builder bonds, senior/subordinate and variable interest rate debt instruments, bridge financings, sureties, impact fee revenue bonds, bond pools, and other alternative debt structuring techniques.

DTA's Financing Strategies Are Quantitative, Specific, and Prepared For Implementation.

In contrast, strategies prepared by other firms are often limited in scope and largely descriptive in nature. DTA provides detailed revenue projections from all available sources and matches feasible revenue streams with the costs for all public improvements and services projected to be required in future years. Since 1985, DTA has been involved in the formation of more than 2,000 public finance districts, with total bond authorizations exceeding $60 billion.

Public Financing Mechanisms Implemented by DTA

in recent years include the following:

  • Bridge and Thoroughfare Districts (California);
  • Business Improvement Districts (California, Arizona, and New Mexico);
  • Certificates of Participation (California and Arizona);
  • Community Facilities Districts (California, Arizona, Washington and Hawaii);
  • Community Services Districts (California);
  • County Service Areas (California);
  • Development Impact Fees (California);
  • General Obligation Bonds (California);
  • Infrastructure Financing Districts (California);
  • Integrated Financing Districts (California);
  • Local Improvement Districts (Nevada);
  • Landscaping and Lighting Districts (California);
  • Marks-Roos Bond Pools (California);
  • Property Assessed Clean Energy (“PACE”) Programs (California);
  • Public Improvement Districts (New Mexico and Texas);
  • Redevelopment Tax Allocation Bonds (California and Nevada);
  • Revenue Bonds (California);
  • Special Assessment Districts (California);
  • Special Service Areas (Illinois); and
  • Special Tax Districts (New Mexico and Texas).
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David Taussig

President/CEO

DAVID TAUSSIG, AICP, President, has over 40 years of experience in the fields of real estate finance and urban economics. His areas of expertise include municipal finance programs for infrastructure and public facilities development, fiscal and economic impact analysis, and land…

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Kuda Wekwete

Senior Vice President

KUDA WEKWETE, Senior Vice President, has a background in mathematical modeling and statistical analysis. Since joining DTA in 2005, Mr. Wekwete has been assisting senior staff at DTA in the formation of Community Facilities Districts, Assessment Districts, Landscaping and Lighting Maintenance…

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