Poughkeepsie’s First Positive Financial Outlook Status in More Than A Decade
A welcomed rating for Poughkeepsie when it comes to credit ratings and financial implications within the community has Mayor Marc Nelson applauding the work of the city's finance department.
Positive Outlooks and Improved Investment Grade For Poughkeepsie
It's been quite some time since Poughkeepsie received such a great outlook from credit rating agencies, but recent ratings released by both Standard and Poor's (S&P) Global and Moody's credit rating agencies have shared that the city has 'reached “investment grade”
status for the first time since 2016.'
In the S&P Global report, they addressed Poughkeepsie'f focus on strengthening and expanding existing policies, giving credit to the city's administration and the Common Council for 'for formally adopting new policies to define fund balance and investment objectives in March 2023, and entering into a Municipal Cooperation Agreement with the New York Cooperative Liquid Assets Security System (NYCLASS) to leverage earnings on investment during a historically high return period.'
Though there is still work to be done to eliminate the deficit, Poughkeepsie's credit ranting increased to 'BBB' investment grade, and it was also deemed worthy of a 'positive financial outlook' according to S&P Global, and there is potential, if the city continues on this path, to raise the rating multiple notches over the next two years.
Community Impact & Mayor Nelson's Praise of Poughkeepsie's Rating
To the average community member, it may seem like just another number, but Poughkeepsie Mayor Marc Nelson was eager to note the significance of these financial improvements, and how the better credit rating can 'significantly reduce the costs of borrowing by recognizing lower financial risks to investors through low-interest rates.'
This is a momentous announcement because it impacts, one way or the other, nearly every resident, business and property owner in the city. Regaining our city’s investment grade quality bond rating was a chief objective of former mayor and now Senator Rob Rolison which has now been achieved thanks to the hard work of the city’s Finance
Department, led by Dr. Brian Martinez, and the support of all our city departments.
Some of the most notable achievements over the past seven years, as noted by S&P, include a reduction of the general fund deficit to $6.8 million in 2021, down from $16 million in 2016, negotiating a new sales tax agreement with the county, as well as building a well seasoned management team.
City Finance Commissioner Dr. Martinez echoed the mayor's sentiments, also noting that
the assignment of two ‘positive’ outlooks Receiving an ‘investment’ grade rating from a major credit agency after so many years demonstrates the team’s long-term commitment to strategically improve the city’s finances. The city’s finance team will continue its ongoing work to achieve timely compliance reporting, to modernize accounting systems, and implement best practices to reduce unnecessary complexity for our citizens.