Raimondo to headline Bond Buyer municipal conference in RIJanuary 23rd, 2013 at 10:33 am by Ted Nesi under Nesi's Notes, On the Main Site
Here’s a rare silver lining to Rhode Island municipalities’ financial troubles: it’s made so much news that a two-day conference on distressed communities is coming to the capital city.
The financial newspaper The Bond Buyer will hold its 2nd Annual Distressed Municipalities Conference on March 18 and 19 at the Omni Providence Hotel (formerly the Westin). Treasurer Gina Raimondo, who received an award at a Bond Buyer dinner in December, is one of the headliners.
Bond Buyer publisher Michael Stanton told WPRI.com its major events are usually held within the Northeast Corridor, where institutional investors are concentrated, and in places that are geographically accessible to government leaders.
“Rhode Island and Providence became a focus because of the variety of issues that have emerged there (including both state pension reform and Chapter 9 bankruptcy), and because the political establishment seems to be ahead of the curve in confronting them,” Stanton said in an email, “so there are some ‘lessons learned’ that will be of interest to public-sector officials and market professionals from elsewhere.”
Bond Buyer held its first symposium on distressed municipalities last March in Philadelphia, where former Central Falls receiver Robert Flanders made headlines for saying Providence would probably be forced to file for bankruptcy. Mayor Angel Taveras cut ties with Flanders soon after.
The other speakers announced so far are Dean Kaplan, managing director of The PFM Group, which has a Providence office, and William Rhodes, a partner at the law firm Ballard Spahr who chairs its public finance department. Stanton said he expects about 200 people to attend and about 40 speakers to take part.
(photo: Dan Nelken for The Bond Buyer)