Cheaper borrowing costs are coming to the Town of Southampton — and less expensive financing is typically good news for local taxpayers.
Moody’s Investors Service on June 23 increased the town’s credit rating to AAA, the agency’s highest available level, citing a “very large and stable tax base” that has proved resilient; diversified revenue that provides for stable operations; strong management, and a recent financial performance that has spurred growth in its available fund balance.
The AAA-rating, which matches the mark posted by Standard & Poor’s, is typically viewed by investors as proof of a municipality’s sound fiscal policies and the ability to pay down its debt handily, qualifying it for the lowest interest rates available on capital borrowing projects.
“This upgrade validates the town’s financial practices, including strong fiscal and management decisions of the past several years,” said Southampton Comptroller Leonard Marchese. “We have strived to provide efficient public services, while maintaining fiscal constraint.”
Said Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman, who led the presentation to Moody’s, “The highest credit rating and the stable outlook give us confidence as we move forward working hard for the people of Southampton.”
In its report, Moody’s cited the town’s significant revitalization efforts, ongoing preservation efforts and a commitment to maintaining its local infrastructure: “The stable outlook reflects the expectation that the town will continue to maintain a solid financial performance, and its tax base will remain extremely large and diverse,” the rating agency concluded.”