[JK: The following is a press release issued by the city’s Finance Department. Aside from the impressive assessment by Moody’s of the city’s finances, it means that the rate by which the city borrows money will be less]
Commissioner of Finance, Michele Madigan Telephone: (518) 587-3550 ext 2577
Re: Moody’s Investors Service Upgrades City of Saratoga Springs Outstanding Bonds to Aa2 from Aa3
Commissioner of Finance Michele Madigan is pleased to report that Moody’s Investors Service has upgraded the City’s bond rating on its outstanding bonds from Aa3 to Aa2. The city has $52.5 million in general obligation bonds outstanding.
This is comparable to the AA+ awarded by Standard and Poors (S&P) for each of the past five years, all during Madigan’s tenure; “ratings that are exceptional for a municipality” stated Finance Commissioner Madigan.
On December 29th the City received the revised rating, a rating that Moody’s says reflects “the City’s strong fiscal management as evidenced by recent consecutive years of surplus operations, strong reserve levels, conservative budgeting, and consistent operating surpluses”. Moody’s also noted that “management set aside funds to cover contract settlements, has been proactive in exploring additional revenue sources”. Additionally Moody’s stated “the City’s healthy financial position will likely remain stable”.
In May 2016, S&P had similar observations: “The city has exhibited strong budgetary performance with positive operating results in each of the last six fiscal years.” It also expressed faith in the City’s fiscal management, stating, “we believe management will continue to make the necessary budget adjustments to maintain balanced operations. As such, we do not anticipate changing the rating during the two-year outlook horizon.”
Commissioner Madigan states: “The City and its taxpayers are benefiting from the excellent policies, practices, budgeting and fiscal management of my administration. These have a direct impact on our ability to improve City infrastructure, maintain beautiful historic buildings, provide trails, recreation and open space, and keep the City safe. The City’s financial health is a fundamental building block and it has flourished during my term.”
Moody’s outlined Credit Challenges for the City and noted that the City should look to “additional revenue sources needed to augment eventual elimination of VLT aid”, and noted the City has a “reliance on economically sensitive revenues”. Finance Commissioner Madigan is well aware of these challenges, has frequently addressed them with the public and her fellow Council members, and further states “I will continue to lead with conservative fiscal practices and sustainable City budgeting that protect the City’s ratings.”
Commissioner of Finance
City of Saratoga Springs
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
518-587-3550 ext. 2557