Deal of the Year 2018 — Southeast: State of West Virginia

Jump-starting West Virginia’s lagging economy was Gov. Jim Justice’s primary goal in 2017 when he spearheaded the Roads to Prosperity program.

At $2.6 billion, the state’s largest-ever infrastructure initiative will finance hundreds of new and backlogged transportation projects, creating new jobs in all 55 counties and boosting the state’s economy.

The Legislature agreed to increase various taxes and fees to support issuing toll revenue bonds and grant anticipation revenue vehicle bonds.

Statewide, voters approved the centerpiece of the program by 73%, allowing the state to issue $1.6 billion of general obligation bonds.

Financing for the Roads to Prosperity program began this year with Public Resources Advisory Group serving as financial advisor.

In June, the state closed on $800 million of GO bonds with Bank of America Merrill Lynch as the book-runner of a 15-member syndicate.

That sale was followed by issuing $79 million of Garvee bonds with Citi as the book-runner and $166 million of turnpike toll revenue bonds with Wells Fargo as the lead banker.

As of August, West Virginia had financed hundreds of projects totaling $1.3 billion, putting thousands of workers into jobs across the state.