RELEASE — A Standard & Poor’s (S&P) Rating Agency Update issued yesterday affirms the City of Kingston’s ‘AA’ credit rating with a stable outlook.
“High institutional stability and strong financial management practices bolster the rating,” states the S&P update. The update outlines S&P’s perspective on the economic strength of the community and the City’s financial management practices, notwithstanding the challenges created by COVID-19.
S&P references a strong local economy with a large and stabilizing public sector and recent private-sector investment that will help to foster economic recovery and offset the impact of the pandemic.
The update also references the City’s strong fiscal management and budgetary performance as being important factors in managing the impacts of COVID-19, noting “Prudent financial management has enabled the City during the pandemic to preserve healthy operating surpluses that fund a large portion of capital expenditures from internally generated sources, keeping debt levels relatively stable.”
This is welcome news considering the fiscal challenges that both the City and the community have faced over the last several months. “We value this annual evaluation by Standard & Poor’s. This external opinion is an important endorsement of our fiscal strategies and approach, particularly in these uncertain times”, says Desiree Kennedy, the City’s Chief Financial Officer.
This rating allows the City to continue to secure funds on the investment market at attractive interest rates and terms.