Town officials were informed this week that S&P Global Ratings, a division of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services had again reaffirmed AAA status to Bethel’s bond rating.
This is the highest rating possible and applies to the town’s existing bond debt as well as to the upcoming bond sale to cover the remaining costs of Johnson and Rockwell school renovations. The high bond credit rating ensures the Town will receive the lowest possible interest rate on its bonds, resulting in significant savings for taxpayers over the life of the loan. In addition, S&P stated Bethel’s debt is eligible to be rated “above the sovereign,” indicating the Town can maintain better credit performance than the U.S. government under conditions of economic stress.
In reaffirming Bethel’s top credit rating, Standard & Poor’s cited the following factors:
• Strong management with good financial policies and practices.
• Strong budgetary performance, with operating surpluses in the general fund and at the total government level.
• Very strong budget flexibility, with reserves at 22% of operating expenses.
• Very strong liquidity.
• Strong debt control, with debt service at 5.2% of operating expenses.
• Very strong local economy and stable tax base.