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Through dedicated client service and deep experience with public finance transactions, Balch & Bingham has been named No. 1 “Bond Counsel” in Alabama and No. 3 “Bond Counsel” in the Southeast for 2013 by The Bond Buyer, according to rankings by Thomson Reuters.

In 2013, Balch served as bond counsel for Southeast transactions aggregating $2,438.9 million with 21 issuances, and for Alabama transactions aggregating $2,431.8 million with 20 issuances. In Alabama, Balch represented more than 65 percent of the volume transacted by the top five bond counsel firms, leading Balch to handle more than $1.9 billion above any other law firm in the state. Balch acted as bond counsel in financings for, among others, issues benefitting Jefferson County, UAB, the Alabama Public School and College Authority and The Healthcare Authority for Baptist Health, An Affiliate of UAB Health System.

“Our Public Finance Practice Group works tirelessly to provide unparalleled service to our public finance clients in Alabama and throughout the country,” said Alan T. Rogers, managing partner. “We are proud to be recognized for this service and are committed to remaining a leader in this area and best serving our clients.”

Balch has one of the oldest and largest public finance practices in the southeastern United States. The firm has been engaged in a public finance practice since 1961 and has a national practice, consisting of bond counsel representations in the Southeast and underwriter, borrower, issuer, trustee, tax compliance, tax controversy, bankruptcy and bank counsel representations throughout the country. With more than 17 attorneys currently engaged in public finance work, Balch has a breadth and depth of experience that covers virtually every type of bond transaction.

The firm’s efforts as bond counsel include reviewing the existing debt structure of the issuing entity; providing advice on the available means and procedures of raising the desired capital; drafting legislation; preparing the required minutes, ordinances, resolutions, contracts, leases, indentures, mortgages, official statements, publications, governmental filings and closing papers; delivering approving legal opinion as to the validity of the bonds; and, where appropriate, the tax-exempt status of the interest on the bonds; and providing post issuance tax advice and arbitrage rebate compliance opinions required under documentation for tax-exempt issues.

“Our firm’s extensive experience and bench strength gave us the opportunity to represent a variety of clients for bond counsel in 2013,” said J. Hobson Presley Jr., chair of the firm’s Public Finance Practice Group. “We are honored to be able to serve our clients effectively and look forward to the challenges and opportunities that 2014 will provide.”

Members within Balch’s Public Finance Practice Group are listed below by firm office.

Birmingham, Ala.
Kevin W. Beatty, partner
John H. Burton Jr., partner
J. Foster Clark, partner
Kathleen A. Collier, partner
J. Thomas Francis Jr., partner
Curt Gwathney, partner
Debra Taylor Lewis, partner
Franklin H. Long, Jr., associate
• J. Thomas Longino, partner
Kathryn J. Ottensmeyer, partner
• Teresa B. Percy, director of research & analysis
J. Hobson Presley Jr., partner
David B. Ringelstein II, partner
• W. Clark Watson, partner

Jackson, Miss.
• Bo Baxter, associate
• Tim Ford, partner
Christian B. Waddell, partner

Montgomery, Ala.
Riley W. Roby, partner

According to Thomson Reuters, bond rankings are based on issues maturing in 13 months or more. Private placements, remarketing and issues not meeting Thomson Reuters’ “T+5” policy rule are excluded. In issues with multiple book-runners, each firm is credited with its actual allocation. In issues with multiple co-advisors or co-counsel, the par amount of the issue is divided equally among the firms.

The Bond Buyer is the only daily newspaper committed to serving the municipal bond industry. Established in 1891, The Bond Buyer is published five days a week except on national holidays and currently reaches more than 40,000 municipal finance professionals, bond issuers, government officials, and investors. It provides readers news, analysis, and data regarding municipal finance that is unavailable in its comprehensive form in any other news outlet. Municipal finance professionals and government issuers have been relying on The Bond Buyer as their choice for municipal bond information for more than 110 years.