Manley, Richard A.

Richard A. Manley Jr.




Rick Manley serves as bond counsel to cities, towns, school districts and various special purpose districts in Massachusetts and throughout New England. His practice involves the issuance of taxable and tax-exempt debt to finance capital projects for local governments, including significant projects in the water, wastewater, airport and sports venue sectors. His work has also involved significant projects for distressed municipal credits and numerous regional school, water and wastewater systems. Rick’s practice also includes the representation of leading national and regional investment banks in connection with the underwriting of municipal debt. Rick is noted as a recognized practitioner in his field by Chambers USA, and is listed in the Public Finance Law section of The Best Lawyers in Americaand was named Best Lawyers 2015 Boston Public Finance "Lawyer of the Year." He is a member of the Firm's Executive Committee.

Prior to joining the Firm as a Partner in the Public Finance Department, Rick was a partner at Ropes & Gray LLP with responsibility for that firm’s city, town and special district bond counsel practice. 

Representative clients include, the New Hampshire Municipal Bond Bank, the City of Manchester, New Hampshire (including Manchester Airport), the Cities of Chelsea, Worcester, Newton, Fall River and Pittsfield, Massachusetts, the State of Rhode Island and the Rhode Island Clean Water Finance Agency. Rick also serves as underwriters’ counsel to leading investment banking firms, including Citigroup, Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch, and for such regional investment banks as RBC Dain Rauscher, First Southwest Company and Roosevelt & Cross.

Rick served as Executive Director of the Massachusetts Legislature’s Special Commission on Local Aid, as a financial advisor to local governments with a major Boston bank, and as a Research Associate with the Boston Municipal Research Bureau. He also served three terms on the Weston, Massachusetts school committee. 

Representative Experience

  • Bond counsel to the City of Chelsea, Massachusetts in connection with the issuance of $109 million general obligation school bonds for the City while it was under state receivership. Transaction involved the development of a debt service reserve fund to backstop general obligation bonds issued to revamp the City’s entire school building infrastructure.
  • Bond counsel to the City of Manchester, New Hampshire for the development of its first general airport revenue bond resolution for Manchester Airport, a department of the City. In connection with this issue, the City created a new capital structure for the Airport and at the same time, through special legislation, realized substantial savings by execution of a forward swap to permit the synthetic fixed rate refunding of previously issued airport bonds.
  • Bond counsel to the City of Manchester, New Hampshire for the development of a stand alone revenue bond structure for the Manchester Water Works, a department of the City. The City’s objective was to spin off the water department, making it fully self-supporting, thereby, discontinuing the practice of issuing general City general obligation debt for water system capital improvements.
  • Served as special counsel to the City of Manchester, New Hampshire in the development of the Verizon Center, an 8,000 seat sports and entertainment venue, and also with respect to the development of the City’s 4,000 seat minor league baseball stadium. In the Verizon Center matter, Rick assisted in the development of a unique financing structure to establish an insured, limited obligation pledge of the City to repay approximately $50 million lease revenue bonds through dedicated meals and rooms tax revenue, thereby avoiding the need to pledge the City’s full faith and credit.
  • Bond counsel to the City of Worcester, Massachusetts for the issuance of $220 million pension obligation bonds, the first such issue in The Commonwealth of Massachusetts. This transaction involved drafting and negotiation of special legislation to permit the issuance of the bonds and the negotiation of a Memorandum of Understanding between the City and The Commonwealth of Massachusetts governing the establishment of a pension reserve fund by the City.
  • Bond counsel to the State of Rhode Island in connection with the creation of the State’s first commercial paper program for cash flow borrowing, and also for the issuance of the State’s first variable rate general obligation bonds. In each instance, special legislation was drafted and negotiated to authorize the issues, credit facility documents were created to support the programs, and new disclosure on the terms of each issue was prepared.

Professional Affiliations and Recognitions

  • Member, National Association of Bond Lawyers
  • Member, American College of Bond Counsel