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Higher Education Finance

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Public Universities

Miller Canfield attorneys have been active in public college and university finance since the 1920s. During the last 25 years, our attorneys have played a role in nearly every major financing transaction by a public university in Michigan. We served as bond/issuer’s counsel in the majority of those transactions, and have also served as underwriter’s counsel. We provide the same great service for public universities in Indiana, Ohio, Illinois and Wisconsin as well.

We have created a number of different financing structures used by public universities, including student fee and dedicated revenue structures, as well as the general revenue structure now used by all public universities in Michigan. Some projects financed by our bonds include:

  • Hospitals
  • Academic buildings
  • Student living centers such as dormitories
  • Student unions and centers
  • Welcome facilities
  • Recreation centers
  • Football stadiums and other athletic facilities
  • Power plants
  • Parking structures

Private Colleges and Universities and Independent Schools 

Miller Canfield has a history serving as bond counsel for Michigan Finance Authority and local economic development corporations in financing for private non-profit colleges and universities and independent schools. Several of our attorneys in Michigan and Illinois regularly help institutions understand and evaluate proposals for structures and terms of financing. We also serve as counsel to banks providing credit and liquidity support for higher education financing as well as counsel to the borrower.

Community Colleges

Miller Canfield offers legal assistance for the specific general and financing needs of community colleges. Among these special areas are:

  • Non-voted bonds and notes
  • Job training bonds
  • Voted bonds
  • Installment purchase agreements
  • State Aid
  • Millage proposals including elections and campaign finance compliance
  • Rating agency presentations
  • Real estate development, including P3 arrangements
  • Investment issues and dealing with losses