Huntington town announced last week that they have maintained their AAA bond rating, and their outlook has been upgraded to “stable.”
Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s Investors Service have upheld the town’s rating, covering both existing debt and a planned $13.925 million bond issue.
Moody’s said the rating “reflects the town’s currently satisfactory reserve position and improving financial obligations, its sizable wealthy tax base and low debt burden.” They also said the stable outlook “reflects our expectation of continued sound financial operations and modest growth and overall stability in the local economy.”
In issuing its rating, Moody’s cited Huntington’s management and good financial policies and practices, as well as adequate budgetary performance, strong budgetary flexibility, very strong liquidity and strong debt and contingent liability position.
“We believe the town has demonstrated sound monitoring, ability to adopt and adhere to formal policies, and forward-planning,” the rating firm’s report said. “Town management tends to conservatively estimate both expenditures and revenues.”
The ratings extend to both the $13.925 million in borrowing and the $109 million in outstanding debt. Of the outstanding debt, $84 million represents Huntington borrowing and $25 million is debt incurred by the water districts in the town; that debt is repaid only by district residents. The planned borrowing includes $12.4 million for town projects and $1.5 million for Greenlawn Water District.
Huntington Supervisor Frank Petrone (D) said he was pleased with the town’s results.
“We are gratified that Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s have once again affirmed their support of Huntington’s fiscal policies by maintaining the AAA bond rating and either upholding or upgrading their outlook,” he said in a statement. “These ratings will ensure that Huntington continues to save on borrowing costs, benefitting all Town taxpayers.”