St. John’s has received an A+ stable rating from the international credit rating agency Standard and Poor’s, council was told Monday.
Coun. Danny Breen, chairman of the finance committee, said this rating follows on the heels Moody’s credit rating agency in the spring when it gave the city an Aa2 stage rating.
“These are important ratings because they ensure we are able to acquire credit at good interest rates which allows us to complete important projects throughout the city. These ratings allow us to get lower interest rates which means we can do more work with the money,” Breen said.
Last year the city unrolled a three-year budget plan which was noted by the Standard and Poor’s report.
Reading from a release prepared for the media, Breen said in that report it says, “St. John’s maintains strong management expertise, good financial planning and conservative debt-management policies, in our view.
“For 2013, it produced a three-year, line-by-line revenue and expenditure forecast that coincided with the start of its three-year property tax assessment cycle. We consider this forecast strong compared with the practices of its domestic peers.”
He said this points out that the practices council has adopted with the introduction of the three-year capital and operating budgets is at the leading edge of the financial practices of other municipalities.
“So there’s no doubt the economy here is strong and no doubt that the credit and financial performance of the city is positive. That lets us take advantage of these great economic times,” said Breen.
According to a the release, the report pointed to St. John’s heated economic conditions with offshore oil projects providing strong economic growth and construction activity in the city reaching its second highest level with more than $430 million in building permits issued in 2012.