Considering that financial prudence (or lack there of) is going to be an issue in the municipal election, it came as somewhat suspicious that the City of Guelph would release the following press release on the Friday before the long weekend that official launches the campaign in earnest. Yes, the city wants to remind citizens that Standards & Poor's has decided to continue our status as an AA+ credit rated municipality. That sounds pretty good, but will it be persuasive enough for city hall's critics endorse the current administration when it comes time to case ballots?Here's the city's press release:
Guelph, ON, August 29, 2014 – Today, Standards & Poor’s Rating Services (Standards & Poor’s) announced that the City of Guelph’s credit rating continues to be strong and remains at AA+ with a stable outlook.
“We are very pleased to see Guelph’s credit rating reaffirmed this year,” said City Chief Financial Officer, Al Horsman “The AA+ rating reaffirms our belief that the City ‘s financial position remains very positive.”
According to the Standard & Poor’s Ratings Direct Research Update the rating reflects Guelph’s, “very strong economic fundamentals, budgetary flexibility, exceptional liquidity position and low debt burden.”
The credit rating, which may help to lower the City’s borrowing rate, also reflects Standard & Poor’s view that Guelph demonstrates strong financial management, as evidenced by very low level of contingent liabilities, low debt levels and strong liquidity which fare much better than many Ontario municipalities.
“Seeing our credit rating continue to remain strong is good for our community, and is a testament to Council’s commitment to sound financial management policies and practices,” said Mayor Karen Farbridge. “It also reflects growing interest in Guelph from the investment and development sectors – an interest the City’s new Enterprise Services Division has helped drive.”
The Standards & Poor’s website offers further information about changes to Guelph’s credit rating and the Ratings Direct Research Update.
For more information on the City’s budget, visit guelph.ca/budget.
About Standards & Poor’s
With offices in 23 countries and a history that dates back more than 150 years, Standard & Poor’s is known to investors worldwide as a leader of financial-market intelligence. Today Standard & Poor’s strives to provide investors who want to make better informed investment decisions with market intelligence in the form of credit ratings, indices, investment research and risk evaluations and solutions.