Regional chair reminds the public about the strong credit rating.

News 100 yellowBy Pepper Parr

June 29th, 2019

BURLINGTON, ON

 

It is the sort of thing you can set your watch by – you just know it is going to happen.

Regional chair Gary Carr tasting honey on a farm tour. These days he is tasting the mood of the residents; wants to know rthat they are thinking.

Regional chair Gary Carr tasting honey on a farm tour. These days he is boasting, deservedly, about the Region’s high credit rating.

At least once a year, twice if he can squeeze in two of them, Regional Chair Gary Garr boasts about the Region’s credit rating. We have seen him boast that it was better than that of the United States – which isn’t hard to do these days.

This time Carr tells us that: “On June 13, 2019, S&P Global Ratings affirmed its top credit rating for Halton Region. Their research summary praises the Region’s strong leadership, fiscal policies and budgetary performance while confirming a stable outlook for the future.

“This is the second top credit rating we have earned this year, and both S&P Global Ratings and Moody’s Investors Service have indicated a high level of confidence in our financial planning and decision-making,” said Halton Regional Chair Gary Carr. “As we prepare to implement our new Strategic Business Plan, this distinction will allow us to support ongoing investments in infrastructure while ensuring top value for taxpayer dollars. We are proud to have earned this distinction yet again.”

credit rating scale“Maintaining a top credit rating minimizes long-term infrastructure capital financing costs by providing Halton and its Local Municipalities with continued access to the best capital financing rates available. As a result, public funds go further when invested in Regional works—such as road, water and wastewater projects—that help improve essential services in the community.

“The research summary profiled the following credit strengths as the rationale for S&P’s decision:

S&P• very strong and well-diversified economy integrated within the GTA with consistent growth;
• very strong financial management with well-defined, prudent and conservative financial policies, well-documented financial plan and stable and well-qualified management team;
• very strong and stable budget performance, very low debt burden and very low contingent liabilities; and
• exceptional internal liquidity support, access to external liquidity for refinancing needs and very robust internal cash flow generation capability.

S&P also cites Halton’s track record of successfully implementing its budgets and strategic plans, and indicates they expect the Region will continue to make prudent fiscal decisions moving forward.

The Region has maintained top credit ratings from S&P Global Ratings (AAA) since 2002 and Moody’s Investors Service (Aaa) since 1989—a successful track record of more than 30 years. Earning this distinction from both agencies each year is a key objective of Halton’s annual Budget and Business Plan.

Regional Chair Gary Carr, Burlington Mayor Rick Goldring and Councillors Blair Lancaster and John Taylor all spoke to an audience of more than 600 people at the Mainway Recreation centre - on an evening when it rained.

Regional Chair Gary Carr, Burlington then Mayor Rick Goldring and Councillors Blair Lancaster and John Taylor meeting with an audience of more than 600 people at the Mainway Recreation centre – on an evening when it rained.

What many people don’t realize is that when a municipality has to go to the public markets for long term funds – the debenture is written by the Region – the municipalities ride the coat tails that Carr boasts about.

He has every reason to be proud. Carr has worked for decades to ensure that the Region is a safe place to live by ensuring the police have the funds they need to keep the streets safe and works even harder to ensure that the reserves at the municipal level are sound.

Carr doesn’t have any direct power over a municipal budget but if he sees it getting a little wobbly he will show up at a critical meeting.

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1 comment to Regional chair reminds the public about the strong credit rating.

  • rob

    these are the same rating agencies who rated US subprime as quality A rated.

    Editor’s note: Well said, those “errors” are what brought on the 2008 recession

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