WASHINGTON — What a difference a year makes. At this time last year, the municipal market was being tossed about in the throes of an historic financial maelstrom that ultimately swallowed up the likes of Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns & Co., and muni bond insurers’ triple-A ratings.

Twelve months and a stimulus law later, the economy shows signs of stabilizing, a number of muni bond-related tax law restrictions have been eased and the municipal market has a slew of new tools to work with, including the groundbreaking Build America Bonds program and billions of dollars in tax-credit bond authority.

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