S&P increases Allegheny County bond rating
By Aaron Aupperlee
Published: Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014, 4:36 p.m.
Standard & Poor's bumped up Allegheny County's bond rating one notch, from an A-plus to a AA-minus, the ratings agency said on Tuesday.
It is the highest the county's bond rating has been in nearly 12 years, county officials said in a news release highlighting the increase.
S&P's outlook for the county's finances remains “stable.”
An upgraded bond rating could lower the county's borrowing costs. The county last issued bonds in July, seeking up to $225.8 million.
County Executive Rich Fitzgerald said the rating change was in response to an increase in the county's cash reserves, reduced reliance on one-time revenue sources and transportation funding and pension legislation that lawmakers approved in Harrisburg.
The Port Authority of Allegheny County is expected to receive 22 percent of the money slated for transit in the $2.3 billion transportation funding plan passed in November. A pension bill signed Dec. 23 could save taxpayers $1.1 billion over 50 years. The so-called “anti-spiking” bill caps the amount of overtime pay employees on the verge of retirement can count toward their pension.
Linda Yip, a credit analyst at S&P, said the county will have to continue to control costs and find new revenue to grow its cash reserves while supporting operations. Yip mentioned weak budgetary flexibility and a largely unfunded pension liability as roadblocks to the agency's increasing the rating further.
Aaron Aupperlee is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7986 or aaupperlee @tribweb.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Switch in pairings helps Penguins defensemen find groove in Game 3
- Penguins insider: Malkin found confidence in Game 3
- Kovacevic: No science to solving power play
- SCI-Pittsburgh inmate taken to AGH after ‘severe beating’
- Husband to stand trial in Derry middle school teacher’s murder
- Pirates notebook: MLB metes out suspensions
- ACC announces Pitt’s opponents for next 2 seasons; Powell signs with Dukes
- Steelers pick up defensive end Heyward’s option for 2015 season
- Pitcher Cueto shuts down Pirates as Reds cruise to victory at PNC
- Pennsylvania Gov. Corbett wants candidate Wolf to release tax records
- Blue Jackets notebook: Columbus wants another crack at playing with lead