Court Rules Texas School Finance Still Unconstitutional
The Texas system for financing public schools remains in violation of the state constitution even after lawmakers restored some of the $5.4 billion cut in the 2011 session, state district court judge John Dietz ruled Thursday.
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A more than $700 million dollar deal that RBC Capital Markets executed in New Mexico earlier this month is has raised the eyebrows of some market participants, who think the firm's municipal advisory relationships with several New Mexico cities created a conflict of interest when it underwrote the deal for a power authority run by those municipalities.  more »
Combined proposals from Texas issuers in November come to about $6.6 billion, with Austin leading the way with about $1 billion.  more »
The municipal market should benefit from the Securities and Exchange Commission's prosecution of Kansas for inadequate disclosure of faltering pension obligations, according to Moody's Investors Service.  more »
A seven-member panel studying high-speed rail service in north Texas plans to seek federal funding to begin development of a line between Austin and Fort Worth.  more »
Nearly 20 years after the airport opened, Denver International Airport is restructuring variable-rate debt as part of a deal that adds a decade to the lease of its major carrier United Airlines by reducing carrier operating costs.  more »
Voters in the Texarkana, Texas, Independent School District will decide whether to issue $30 million of bonds to build a new school.  more »
A growing number of school districts are showing signs of fiscal stress, acoording to a report from the Colorado State Audtor.  more »
Texas earned record low interest rates on its $5.4 billion sale of tax and revenue anticipation notes on Aug. 26, Comptroller Susan Combs said.  more »
Utah has postponed a $235 million advance refunding that had been expected to price competitively Sept. 3.  more »
After winning strong support from voters in its last bond election, Houston Independent School District will issue $350 million of variable-rate debt that carries triple-A ratings on two levels.  more »
Attorneys for Texas Gov. Rick Perry said Thursday that an investigation of how his donors won contracts from a state cancer research fund did not motivate him to veto funding for the investigators.  more »
Two school districts in the Houston area will account for more than $1 billion of bonds on the November ballot after their boards approved calling for voter support of the measures.  more »
A state fee on so-called "small tobacco" companies that were not part of a 1998 settlement with states' attorneys general is unconstitutional, a Texas appeals court ruled.  more »

Issuance of municipal MSA tobacco bonds by states was the subject of a highly critical article published by ProPublica. The article attempts to make a case that states erred in deciding to issue tobacco bonds. The article was widely circulated across social media. As we frequently observe, the national media focus on the muni market is appreciated, but the facts got muddied in the pursuit of a good story.

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