New Jersey officials are looking for underwriting services for an upcoming grant anticipation revenue vehicle bond deal that will help finance road and bridge repairs estimated at $270 million.

Responses to the Treasury Department's request for proposals are due by Feb. 20 at 3 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The state is looking for one senior underwriter and up to three co-senior managers on a New Jersey Transportation Trust Fund Authority Garvee transaction.

Officials may select co-managers for the TTFA sale from the state's current co-senior manager pool. In addition, working on the TTFA transaction will not restrict a firm from serving on other New Jersey bond deals.

"Selection as a senior manager or co-senior manager under this RFP does not limit a firm's ability to be selected to participate under a separate procurement or to participate in underwriting pools of which the firm is already a member," according to the RFP.

The Series 2009B bonds will utilize federal transportation funds during a time frame of roughly 12 years. Officials will finalize the exact size of the bond deal in March after the state receives bids on the road and bridge projects.

Minimum requirements include prior experience as a senior or co-senior underwriter on at least two Garvee transactions within the last three years, with one deal within the last two years. Managers will be asked to recommend debt structures to maximize debt capacity and obtain bids for credit enhancement, among other duties. The RFP asks firms to assume a closing date of April 1.

Proceeds of the 2009 sale will help finance the replacement of two moveable bridges, intersection upgrades, and road widening.

The TTFA last sold Garvees in 2006. Lehman Brothers priced $131 million of Series 2006A Garvees on June 9 with serial maturities ranging from 2007 through 2018. The bonds are insured by Financial Guaranty Insurance Co. Yields range from 3.55% with a 5% coupon in 2007 to 4.25% with a 5% coupon in 2018.

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