What is Public Finance?

Public finance involves how a government uses its funds to finance the economy. All money that goes in and out of a government’s fund is considered public finance. That includes taxes, public improvement projects, schools, municipal bonds, and much more. The legalities of handling public finance are complex, and rightfully so. A government must be diligent in ensuring that all laws and regulations are followed regarding the use of public funds. 

For example, a Wisconsin city discovers that a section of its sewer system needs to be replaced. It’s an expensive and intrusive project that will take months of planning and consultation with experts in different fields. Landscapers, engineers, developers, and lawyers all work together, forming different pieces of the puzzle in order to design, construct, pay for, and implement the new sewer system. 

wisconsin public finance attorney

What Does a Public Finance Lawyer Do?

Because public finance laws can vary greatly from county to county and state to state, most governments choose to make use of a public finance attorney. Lawyers who specialize in public financing are up to date on all laws locally, statewide, and nationally. Governments, private entities, and individuals all might seek the counsel of a public finance attorney for any instance involving the use of public funding. A public finance attorney can guide the client through every step of the process while offering advice regarding the hundreds of public finance laws in effect.

Some examples of areas a public finance attorney can advise on include:

Municipal Bonds

Issuing municipal bonds is one way for municipalities to pay for public improvements. Wisconsin has several laws surrounding municipal bonds, including how they’re taxed, and a public finance attorney can ensure that the plan follows all local and state laws while accomplishing the municipality’s financial goals. A lawyer can serve as bond counsel, issuer counsel, or borrower counsel to meet the needs of the government entity. 

Tax Increment Funding

Tax Increment Funding (TIF) is used by towns, municipalities, and states to pay for improvements to areas that need improvement. By increasing the future tax revenue, the TIF can receive public financing with the promise of a future increase. TIF classification and usage must follow complex rules, and a public finance attorney can ensure that a TIF project goes smoothly. 


Public financing covers a broad range of subjects. When a municipality or government entity wants to make improvements for its citizens, it might require a lawyer to advise on economic development incentives. 

Contact a Wisconsin Public Financing Attorney

At Atolles Law, S.C., our public finance attorneys take a fresh approach to each case. We offer local and national insights that help our clients accomplish their goals successfully. Every situation is unique, and we’re here to create a custom solution that suits all of your public finance needs. If you have more questions for our public financing lawyers, contact Atolles Law, S.C. to schedule a consultation.