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City of Johnson, Arkansas


A. PURPOSE. The City of Johnson, Arkansas (the "City") is requesting proposals from investment banking firms to serve as underwriter for the issuance of potential sales and use bonds in order for the City to finance certain street and related improvement projects along Main Drive and Wilkerson Road in the City of Johnson, Arkansas (the "Project").

A special election is anticipated to be set in 2021 and voters will be asked to approve the purpose of the bonds along with a new sales tax (the "Tax") to pay for the bonds (the "Bonds"). The proceeds of the Tax is expected to be used for debt service and the amount not needed for debt service, Trustee's fees and expenses, and other administrative charges in connect with the Bonds ("Surplus Tax Receipts") would be used to retire the Bonds early.

B. SUBMISSION OF PROPOSALS. Proposals responding to the questions and requests for information in the manner specified in this Request for Proposals ("RFP") should be received by the City by February 22, 2021 before 2:00 PM CDT (local time). Proposers should submit proposals by email to Mayor Chris Keeney at or in person at 2904 Main Drive, Fayetteville, Arkansas. Late proposals will not be accepted. The City reserves the right to reject any or all proposals. Any information or materials submitted as a response to the RFP shall become the property of the City and will not be returned.

The City may, at any time prior to the selection of a firm, reject any and all proposals and cancel this RFP, without liability, upon finding that there is good cause for rejecting all proposals and that it would be in its interest to cancel the solicitation. Furthermore, regardless of the number and quality of proposals submitted, the City shall under no circumstances be responsible for any proposer's costs and expenses incurred in submitting a response to this RFP.

C. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION. It is the responsibility of the proposer to inquire about and clarify any aspect of the RFP. Questions should be directed to the City's Mayor, Chris Keeney by email or by telephone at (479) 521-7291.


February 5, 2021 - Request for Proposals Issued
February 22, 2021 - Proposals due at 2:00 CST
March 9, 2021 — City Council selects bond underwriter

E. SELECTION CRITERIA. Responses will be evaluated by the City based upon the following criteria; however, the ranking of proposals may be based on factors beyond the listed criteria at the discretion of the City.

1. Relevant experience underwriting municipal bonds and specifically experience underwriting issues secured by sales and use taxes;
2. Relevant experience underwriting tax-exempt issues within Arkansas;
3. Experience of professionals to be assigned to the City, including demonstrated ability, years of relevant experience, and type of experience;
4. Capability to provide the required services; and
5. Familiarity with the Project and the goals of the City related to the Project.


The City expects to work with the selected firm through a Senior Managing Underwriter. The Senior Managing Underwriter's role will be to work with the underwriting team to market the Bonds for the City through a public offering. It is the City's expectation that the firm selected will:

  • Work with the City personnel and its Bond Counsel to monitor the marketplace, refine the debt structure and assist with any other factors affecting the marketing of the Bonds;
  • Conduct and execute the sale of the securities and provide an underwriting of the securities; and
  • Other duties as specifically requested.


A. TRANSMITTAL LETTER. A one-page transmittal letter prepared on the proposer's business stationery should accompany the proposal.

B. PROPOSAL. The proposal should be labeled "Proposal to serve as Underwriter for the City of Johnson".

The submission must contain sufficient information to enable evaluation of the proposal. It should be prepared in a clear and concise manner and should address each of the following subsections:

     1. Overview of the Proposing Firm. State the name of the proposing firm and provide an overview of the firm, including the makeup of the sales and trading department as well as your firm's financial condition. Provide your firm's total capital, net capital and uncommitted (excess net) capital for the past 5 calendar years. Indicate the number and location of Arkansas sales offices and the size of each office.

     2. Investment Banking Team and Personnel. Describe the manner in which you would organize your firm's resources to serve as the City's underwriter. In doing so, please
address the following questions or issues:

a. Identify the individual who will manage this financing on a day-to-day basis. Indicate the degree to which he or she will be able to commit the firm's resources to the City. What is this person's availability for this financing and what other commitments does he or she have?

b. Identify the other public finance bankers and underwriters who will be assigned to work on this project, their roles and responsibilities. Provide a brief resume or summary of relevant experience for each key member of the financing team.

     3. Marketing Capabilities and Distribution Plan. Discuss your marketing capabilities and distribution plan for this transaction. Identify the number of fixed income sales professionals and retail advisors within the firm and specifically within Arkansas that would be involved in marketing the transaction. Which investors or type of investors will your firm target? Describe the firm's perspective on the role of retail sales for an issue of
this type. Is retail distribution important and, if so, how would your firm propose to market to the retail sector?

     4. Rationale for Appointment and Proposal Summary. This section of the proposal should be used by each proposer to present the case for its selection. It is not necessary for you to recite comprehensively your firm's qualifications and experience, but it would be useful for you to describe how your qualifications and experience in structuring, underwriting and distributing securities is relevant to the proposed transaction. In particular, select three past deals where you served as senior managing underwriter and provide case studies for each (limited to one page each), summarizing the similarity to this City's proposed issue and their successfulness. Indicate the date of issue, issuer, credit description, size and method of sale.

Issued this 5th day of February, 2021.

City of Johnson, Arkansas