Atlantic City’s problems not solved by bondholder haircut or bankruptcy, Lavin says

This piece first published February 4, 2016, Debtwire Municipals
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Targeting bondholders and bankruptcy are not sensible solutions for Atlantic City, former Emergency Manager Kevin Lavin said in an interview with Debtwire Municipals.

Lavin served for a year as Atlantic City’s emergency manager and left the position last month to begin at Ankura Consulting Group, a business advisory and expert services firm. He left the door open to further work with municipalities, a sector that has a “very big need,” he said.

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COURT: Atlantic City gets temporary reprieve from USD 88m Borgata tax bill and will not pay USD 60m due to casino in December

This piece first published December 4, 2015, Debtwire Municipals
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Atlantic County Superior Court Judge Julio L. Mendez granted a temporary restraining order today on behalf of Atlantic City preventing The Borgata Hotel and Casino from taking action to collect upon a 2014 USD 88m tax settlement.

Michael Stinson, Atlantic City’s finance director, said in an interview with Debtwire Municipals that the city has about USD 40m in cash on hand on 3 December. It honored a debt payment of USD 2.7m and will honor a payment of about USD 10m on 15 December, he said.

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Pennsylvania budget impasse creates arbitrage with California

This piece first published September 29, 2015, Debtwire Municipals
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The solution lawmakers reach concerning the Pennsylvania budget impasse and pension trouble will have far more impact on the market than the stalemate itself, said Charles W. Grande, executive director and head of municipal credit research at UBS Global Asset Management.

Market participants have taken a wait-and-see approach to Pennsylvania’s budget impasse and pension problems as they await a political solution that may solve both, Grande said.

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Baldwin campaign gets boost from women’s groups, gay rights advocates

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Photo: Tammy Baldwin addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.. Baldwin would be the first openly gay senator if elected. / J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Female candidates often get support from women and related advocacy groups for their campaigns.

And when a candidate is female and gay? An entirely new demographic offers its support, said Dave Wegge, a political science professor at St. Norbert College in De Pere.

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Gestational carriers help make families for those who can’t conceive

Diane Harrill helps make families.

The 49-year-old has given birth to nine children. But they’re not all genetically hers. She has five biological children, aged 13 to 30, and she has been a gestational carrier for four others. She calls the four her “surro-babies,” but doesn’t consider them her children.

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“I love those babies, but not the way a mother loves a child,” Harrill said. “You love them, you think of them, but not every day. I think about what they’ll be when they grow up, just like my own kids. I remember their birthdays. But I don’t worry about them, because I know the parents. They were never mine.”

Gestational carriers bring embryos to term that are not genetically their own. The term “surrogate“ is commonly used in place of gestational carrier, but surrogates have genetic connections to the embryo.

The use of gestational carriers is up in recent years. Their numbers increased 13 percent in 2011 from the previous year, according to the most recently available data from the Society of Assisted Reproductive Technologies. The society says totals are up 99 percent since 2004.

Harill was first pregnant as a gestational carrier in 2004 when she was 41. Harrill’s sister-in-law introduced her to a couple unable to conceive, and Harrill says she had no reservations about carrying the child.

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