AVALON – The borough has maintained its AAA bond rating from Standard & Poor’s -- the highest bond rating offered to municipal governments -- and the rating is saving Avalon taxpayers money in debt management, officials said.
"This is outstanding news for taxpayers in Avalon and further proof that the Borough pays very close attention every day to managing its finances and minimizing debt", said Mayor Martin Pagliughi.
The mayor attributed the rating to good work and due diligence by Jim Craft, CFO, and the borough’s Finance Committee, including Councilwoman Nancy Hudanich and Councilman Chuck Covington.
Standard & Poor’s is known to investors worldwide as a leader of financial-market intelligence.
Standard and Poor's offered commentary and evaluation on Avalon's request for a bond rating and cited specific reasons for the Borough earning the AAA bond rating, including:
* Strong budgetary performance with only a slight operating deficit in the general fund in fiscal 2016;
* Very strong budgetary flexibility with an available fund balance in fiscal 2016 of 31% of operating expenditures, and the flexibility to raise additional revenues despite statewide tax caps;
* Very strong liquidity with total government available cash at 45% of general fund expenditures;
* Strong institutional framework score; and
* Very strong economy with projected per capita effective buying income at 231% of the national level and market value per capita of $6.7 million.
In addition, Avalon received its independent municipal audit in July which shows no area for improvement by the borough for the eighth consecutive year, Pagliughi said.
Avalon's budget reports and audits are available at avalonboro.net.