CLARKSTOWN, N.Y. — For the first time in a decade Rockland County bonds have been ranked in the “A” category, said a Rockland County Executive.
The “A-“ rating by Fitch is the county’s fifth consecutive bond upgrade since 2014 when Rockland’s bonds were rated just above junk and the county had a $138 million deficit.
“This is a development that matters to every person who pays taxes in Rockland County,” Ed Day said. “It means that we can borrow money as we do regularly to fund capital projects at a lower cost.”
For a $30 million new issue 20-year-bond the difference between an “A” rating and a “B” rating is between $350,000 and $500,000, according to Rockland Commissioner of Finance Stephen DeGroat.
Rockland County has saved between $3 to $5 million in debt service since 2014.
“That is equivalent to a three to five percent property tax increase that did not happen due to our fiscal responsibility,” Day said.
Rockland earned $11 million in premiums from its $96 million deficit reduction bond sale and $20 million in total premiums on all bond sales since 2014.
“This is how we are driving the deficit down without raising your property taxes,” Day said.
Day noted that the Fitch analysts rated Rockland’s bonds as “A-” with a stable outlook.
Sale of the county-owned Sain building for $4.51 million would allow the county to reduce its remaining $10 million deficit by 40 percent, he said.
Source: Ramapo Daily Voice