Kroll rating bookends boost from Moody’s in early November
The Erie County Division of Budget and Management announced Kroll Bond Rating Agency (“KBRA”) assigned a long-term rating of AA- and a “stable” outlook for Erie County bonds, another affirmative sign from an independent financial entity that the county’s fiscal profile is strong and stable in 2019. In early November, Moody’s Investor’s Service (“Moody’s”) upgraded Erie County’s credit rating to A1, up from A2, and noted a “stable” outlook for the county, as well, marking the highest rating the county has reached with Moody’s since 1976.
“Erie County’s credit rating has had a good month in November, and this rating from Kroll Bond Rating Agency further reinforces the good news we got earlier this month when Moody’s raised the county rating to A1. This is more affirmation of the responsible and prudent path my administration is taking in managing county finances, reducing long-term debt, and consistently producing reasonable budgets,” Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz said. “Having yet another rating agency confirm that we are on the right track and growing stronger for the future is good news for all Erie County residents.”
KBRA notes in the Rating Report that “the rating reflects the County’s strong governance and management structure, favorable fund balance policy, sound budgeting practices, manageable fixed cost burden, and gradually improving financial performance” and that “over the last five years, all categories of fund balance have increased, and the County has maintained the unassigned General Fund balance at approximately 7.6% of expenditures since FY 2015.”
Credit ratings help determine the interest rate and capacity at which Erie County can borrow money; the higher the credit rating, the lower the interest rate will be for future borrowings.