Mark has served as bond counsel, disclosure counsel, and underwriter’s counsel, handling municipal bond transactions involving cities, counties, state, and commonwealth level entities, industrial and economic development authorities, and nonprofit entities, including hospitals, universities, and museums. He also works as counsel in taxable bond transactions, debt restructurings, working capital financings, municipal securitizations, tax increment and special assessment district financings, and municipal derivative transactions.
Mark particularly focuses on matters related to disclosure and security law developments and served on the National Association of Bond Lawyers Securities Law Committee. He has spoken on developments in this area before the Council of Development Finance Agencies, the Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities Association, and the Government Finance Officers Association of Pennsylvania (GFOA) East Chapter. He also has presented webinars and podcasts on public finance, including developments in securities law and Chapter 9 of the Bankruptcy Code.
Mark received his undergraduate degree from Kenyon College. He earned his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law.
September 01, 2021
Mark Vacha authored an article in the 2021 Winter Issue of The Ledger for the Government Finance Officers Association of Pennsylvania discussing the differences between green bonds and traditional bonds.
December 10, 2020
Mark Vacha authored an article in the 2020 Fall Issue of The Ledger for the Government Finance Officers Association of Pennsylvania addressing the current labors to build a post-London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) marketplace.
August 20, 2020
Mark Vacha authored an article published in The Ledger, that provides issuers with an overview of a sampling of recent SEC guidance for purposes of disclosure for public bond and other debt offerings.
March 30, 2020
Mark Vacha and Scott Mehok discuss the framework for the U.S. Treasury and Federal Reserve System to introduce supra-institutional investors into the municipal securities markets created by the CARES Act.
August 27, 2018
Mark Vacha, Jon Ballan, and Suzanne Mayes discuss the two new categories of listed events that require continuing disclosure material event notice filings by issuers or obligated persons.
July 12, 2017
Mark Vacha discusses potential DRIP benefits for municipal markets in The Ledger.
December 23, 2016
Mark Vacha discusses the post Chapter 9 filing bond disclosures of Orange County, Calif., and the City of Detroit.
October 01, 2016
Mark Vacha discusses crowdfunding in the Government Finance Officers Association of Pennsylvania’s The Ledger.
April 11, 2016
A view as to whether crowdfunding may have a place in municipal finance.
February 12, 2016
In this podcast, Mark Vacha discusses: Is Cincinnati 10 Years Ahead in Addressing Public Sector Pension and OPEB Challenges? A Summary and Analysis of the 2015 Cincinnati Retirement System Multi-party Collaborative Settlement Agreement.
October 20, 2015
In this podcast, Mark Vacha discusses: Pension Funding in New Jersey: Whose Problem is It? …The Political Branches: A Summary and Analysis of the New Jersey Supreme Court’s Ruling in Burgos v. State of New Jersey
August 07, 2015
Mark Vacha, Public & Project Finance, summarizes and highlights some of the significant points of the City of San Bernardino's proposed plan for the adjustment of its debts (as proposed and filed on May 29, 2015 in bankruptcy court). Mark also discusses the public finance concern of how different types of bondholders, creditors and other stakeholders are treated and the take-aways from this case for general governmental credits.
July 22, 2015
In a summary analysis of the Illinois Supreme Court’s ruling invalidating Public Act 98-599, Mark Vacha (Public & Project Finance) summarizes and highlights some of the significant points of the Supreme Court of Illinois' decision filed on May 8, 2015 which struck down pension reform legislation for certain state level plans in Illinois.
July 01, 2015
Mark Vacha discusses how state and local government officials have enjoyed qualified immunity from civil liability and how this may be affected from recent municipal securities litigation in an article titled "Qualified Immunity Defense May Protect Municipal Officials from Securities Litigation by Private Investors But Not The Securities and Exchange Commission."
November 01, 2014
Mark Vacha discusses bond requirements that can help your township communicate
more effectively with counsel and enhance compliance after bonds to finance an upcoming project are issued.
May 09, 2014
This podcast will address the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s final municipal advisor rule issued in fall of 2013 with a particular focus upon their impact with respect to underwriters and the ability of underwriters to provide information and ideas for financings to issuers and obligated persons.
March 06, 2014
This podcast will provide an overview of the major provisions within the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board’s proposed Rule G-42. Also highlighted are certain provisions that the MSRB is seeking comments upon.
February 28, 2014
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act ("Dodd-Frank Act") was signed into law on July 21, 2010 in response to the financial crisis that occurred in 2008.
January 24, 2014
Mark Vacha discusses how November 5, 2013 marked the first time the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) assessed a financial penalty against a municipal issuer. The SEC charged The Greater Wenatchee Regional Events Center Public Facilities District (the “District”), a municipal corporation located within Washington state, with misleading investors in an offering of bond anticipation notes (the “2008 BANs”) issued to finance an arena for ice hockey and other uses (the “Regional Center”).
December 19, 2013
This podcast will focus on a recent SEC public finance enforcement action that concern misstatements made in an official statement with respect to municipal securities offered for a south Florida health care system.
October 17, 2013
This podcast will focus on two recent inter-related SEC public finance enforcement actions that concern misstatements made in an official statement about an issuer’s continuing disclosure history.
September 06, 2013
Legislation (Senate Bills No. 901, 902, 903 and 904 (SB 901, SB 902, SB 903 and SB 904)) has been introduced in the Pennsylvania General Assembly that, if passed, in whole or in part, could significantly affect certain types of municipal finance transactions involving municipal authorities and other local governments.
July 03, 2013
This podcast will focus on two recent SEC public finance enforcement actions that reflect a common theme - issuers are liable under the securities laws for material misstatements or omissions made outside of an official statement or other offering document.
November 01, 2012
This Podcast will review select highlights from the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board from 2012. Throughout this Podcast we will refer to the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board as the “MSRB”. Discussion is intended to put these developments into the context of the MSRB’s larger mission and goals. This Podcast is intended for issuers, borrowers and other market professionals.
October 01, 2012
SEC Recommends Major Changes in Municipal Securities Market - Public & Project Finance Alert - The Securities and Exchange Commission (the SEC) on July 31, 2012 issued a comprehensive report with recommendations to improve the municipal securities market and enhance disclosure provided to investors.
July 01, 2012
This issue of the Business Law Observer covers several areas of business activity, anticipating problems, and how to deal with them before they become insurmountable, including: Venture Capital, Intellectual Property, Governmental Risks, China Practice and Public and Project Finance.
June 01, 2012
Public Finance: A Survey of Recent Developments - The Authority: Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities Association - Over the last year and several recent months various regulatory and other developments have occurred with respect to the municipal bond markets and municipal finance. The purpose of this article is to briefly highlight a number of these developments and point out certain related issues. This is not intended to be exhaustive. Pursuant to the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation ("Dodd-Frank"), the SEC conducted field hearings on the municipal markets in 2010 and 2011. SEC Commissioner
May 08, 2012
Recent SEC Enforcement/Investigation Developments in Public Finance - Cozen O'Connor Podcast - Click on the link to listen to the podcast.
April 01, 2012
It’s the Issuer’s Prerogative MSRB Proposes Rule Amendments for Retail Order Periods for Bond Offerings - Government Finance Officers Association of Pennsylvania Newsletter - For various types of municipal bonds or notes that are publicly offered, the marketing process may often involve a retail order period that is for a day or so prior to pricing the bonds with institutional investors. Retail order periods are meant to gain access to individual investors who typically purchase bonds in smaller lots than institutional investors. A significant percentage of municipal securities is held by individual...
December 16, 2011
Public Pension Disclosure — Recent Developments and Emerging Ideas About Best Practices - Cozen O'Connor Podcast - Click on a link below to listen to the segment.
Events & Seminars
August 31, 2021
- State College, PA
August 30, 2021
- State College, PA
February 24, 2020
- Henrico, VA
February 15, 2018
- West Chester, PA
April 28, 2017
- Richmond, VA
August 28, 2016
- Pittsburgh, PA
April 19, 2015
- Hershey, PA
August 13, 2014
March 13, 2014
- Allentown, PA
August 25, 2013
- State College, PA
February 08, 2013
- Plymouth Meeting, PA
August 27, 2012
- Hershey, PA
February 16, 2012