DANE COUNTY EARNS ‘TRIPLE A’ BOND RATINGS FROM MOODY’S AND FITCH
March 09, 2007
Dane County Budget Director Charles Hicklin (608) 266-4109
Joanne Haas, Office of the County Executive (608) 267-8823
Dane County this week has received “AAA” (Triple A) credit ratings from Fitch Ratings and Moody’s Investment Service for $29.3 million of General Obligation Bonds and for $191 million of outstanding General Obligation debt.
“This is the best credit rating category available and means the County gets the lowest interest rates when it borrows money for large projects,” Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk said. “This is good news for taxpayers.”
Fitch Ratings said in its assessment Dane County’s finances “are solid due to a diverse and growing revenue stream and sound cost control measures. The administration is committed to enhancing social welfare and public safety programs, while maintaining strong management practices that limit budgetary spending growth.”
Moody’s Investors Service said in its report the “assignment of the highest long-term rating reflects the county’s substantial and stable economic base; satisfactory financial operations supported by adequate reserves, and manageable debt profile.
"Moody’s anticipates that the county will maintain sound financial operations due to careful fiscal management and a strong tax base growth that allows for adequate increases in the property tax levy.”
The $29.3 million in bonds, a general obligation secured by the county’s taxing powers, will finance a 1,300-space addition to the parking garage at the Dane County Regional Airport. The county, however, expects to repay the bonds from airport revenues.
Fitch Ratings and Moody’s Investment Service are two of the nation’s leading credit rating agencies. Bonds that are rated ‘AAA’ are judged to be of the best quality, carrying the smallest degree of risk. Only two Wisconsin counties have a “Aaa” bond rating—Dane and Waukesha counties.
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