The city of Miami has received a substantial bond rating improvement from Standard & Poor’s thanks to improved financials and stable management practices.
The credit agency announced Monday that it boosted the city’s rating for a series of 2002 general obligation bonds up four notches to A+ from BBB. The city also received a boost to its non-ad valorem and limited tax debt to A from BBB-.
The ratings hike means long-term saving for taxpayers.
In announcing the change, S&P analysts said they relied on Miami’s strong economy and recovered budget following three consecutive years from 2010 through 2012 in which city officials balanced their budget by declaring “financial urgency.” Now, the city is enjoying annual surpluses, and reserves that are nearing $100 million.
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The report mentioned concerns about the city’s debts, including pension obligations, and ongoing litigation with its unions and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. But City Manager Daniel Alfonso said in a statement that he’s “very pleased with the upgrade.”
“It is a sign that the city is doing better financially and we are moving in a positive direction,” he said.