New law brings transparency to volume cap allocations

report

On June 30, 2016 Governor Cuomo signed into law Assembly Bill 10255 to renew the Private Activity Bond Allocation Act for two more years. The new law is almost identical to the expired law but makes two significant changes: the bill moves the recapture date forward from October to September and adds some key provisions that will bring reporting and transparency to the volume cap allocation process.

Both changes seem borrowed straight out of CHPC’s 2014 report Pump Up the Volume! CHPC recommended moving the recapture date from October to July and requiring the State to “publicly report annually which agencies have received bond allocations, how they have been used and whether any volume cap has been carried forward or expired.”

The changes that were just signed into law will go a long way towards implementing CHPC’s recommendations. The impetus for Pump Up the Volume was the vague understanding of volume cap among developers, even as it is a crucial resource for housing development. Making information public about the bond allocations is a good government practice that CHPC supports. It will also help bond issuing agencies understand what resources are available for reallocation and will help developers understand the constraints for obtaining financing for their projects. Moving the recapture date to September will provide additional time for bond issuing agencies to plan their end-of-year pipelines.

Summary of the bill changes:

  • The recapture date is moved from October 15th to September 15th.
  • The new law requires the State to publish on its website annually:
    • the amounts initially allocated to each State and local bond issuing agency,
    • the amounts issued, unused and recaptured by/from each agency,
    • the allocations made from the Statewide Bond Reserve,
    • any carryforward allocations,
    • and any expired bond volume.

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