Campaign Conundrum

Braun, Martin Z.
April 2003
Bond Buyer;4/9/2003, Vol. 344 Issue 31611, p1
Trade Publication
As much as $10,000 in campaign contributions donated in January 2002 by municipal finance professionals at Commerce Capital Markets to its parent bank's federal political action committee were donated a month later to Jim Treffinger, a Republican running for the U.S. Senate who was then county executive of Essex County, New Jersey. Following the donation to Treffinger by the committee, called Commerce Bancorp PAC-FED, Commerce Capital Markets served as senior manager or co-senior manager on three of five negotiated deals brought to market in 2002 by the Essex County Improvement Authority and the Essex County Utilities Authority. Commerce will serve as lead book-runner on a $94.3 million issue of general obligation guaranteed lease revenue bonds to fund the continued construction of the county's jail. As county executive, Treffinger appointed members to the Essex County Improvement Authority's seven-member board and selected the seven-member board of the Essex County Utilities Authority, with the advice and consent of the Board of Chosen Freeholders, the county's elected legislative board.


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