Moody’s ups village credit rating

01/13/2014 3:29 PM |

FILE PHOTO | Greenport Village Hall.

Moody’s Investor Services upgraded Greenport Village’s credit rating on Friday, allowing the village to save on interest when borrowing funds in the future.

The credit rating organization released a statement stating that “the village’s continued conservative approach to budget management” has caused the government’s financial outlook to rebound during the past year.

The village received credit for its sound financial reserves and its strong fiscal management, Moody’s report stated. However, Greenport’s limited tax base and declining value remained a challenge, the report stated.

Greenport now has an Aa3 rating, categorizing it as a high quality and very low credit risk. This is upgrade from its former A1 rating, which gave the village an upper-medium grade, according to Moody’s ranking system.

The village previously earned a low rating after it racked up approximately $4 million in debt funding large-scale projects such as renovations to Mitchell Park and sewage treatment plant upgrades, Deputy Mayor George Hubbard said Monday.

“We have been working on paying down the overall debt,” Mr. Hubbard said. “Each year we have been putting money in reserves and Moody’s saw that. They like the fact that, besides major projects, we have been paying for things as we go while also paying down the debt.”

With a higher rating, the village will be able to borrow money at lower interests rates. This will help finance coming upgrades to the village’s electric plant, Mr. Hubbard said.

“The higher ranking is great because this new project will end up costing us less money in the end,” he said. “This is all very positive stuff for the outlook of the village going forward.”

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