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Updated best practices of bond proceeds released by GFOA

The Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA) has provided updated best practices for investment of bond proceeds with specific recommendations on how to engage investment brokers. See GFOA Investment of Bond Proceeds. The updated best practices take into account the new rules that have recently been released by the SEC to govern the practices of municipal financial advisors. Under the new SEC rule, to act as a municipal advisor, a person or firm must be registered with the SEC. If a municipality chooses to hire a municipal advisor, that municipal advisor owes a fiduciary duty to the municipality and can provide specific investment advice. On the other hand, those underwriters or other professionals that are not registered municipal advisors do not owe a fiduciary duty to municipalities and therefore generally cannot provide specific investment advice to the governmental entity (unless some limited exemptions are met). GFOA’s Best Practices on Investment of Bond Proceeds recommends that governments “have in place policies and procedures for when they will engage the use of an investment adviser or municipal advisor.” In addition, municipalities that do not have specific staff tasked with monitoring markets and their investments “are strongly encouraged to use a municipal advisor or investment adviser.”

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