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Posted on: October 9, 2019

City receives strong credit ratings, ensuring low interest rates for public improvements

Galveston, TX – October 9, 2019 – Two of the top financial rating firms assessed the City of Galveston this month and assigned strong credit ratings, citing the City’s prudent financial management and low debt burden.

Moody’s Investors Services assigned the City of Galveston an “Aa3” rating, a high grade indicating a stable financial outlook. Fitch Ratings Inc. assigned an “AA” rating, which signifies a low credit risk.

The ratings are important because they qualify the City for favorable interest rates on city-issued debt used to fund important projects, such as street and water infrastructure improvements.

“By having a high credit rating we save our residents money through favorable interest rates while fulfilling the promises made to voters in the 2017 election,” City Manager Brian Maxwell said. “Our core mission is to achieve and sustain strong financial footing for the City of Galveston while also meeting and improving our infrastructure and public safety needs.”

Today, the City of Galveston sold approximately $37 million in bonds to fund important projects. This is the second and final installment of the $62 million bond package voters approved in May 2017. Thanks to a favorable credit rating for the City’s General Obligation Debt, the City of Galveston in 2017 was able to sell bonds at a 3.06 percent interest rate. Today’s bonds sold at an interest rate of 2.57 percent.

“This interest rate minimizes interest expense while allowing the City to move forward on numerous projects in a cost-effective manner,” Deputy City Manager Dan Buckley said.

The latest sale will help fund several street projects, including 25th Street from Broadway to Seawall, 73rd Street from Heards Lane to Avenue N1/2, 16th Street from Broadway to Avenue N1/2 and 30th Street from Postoffice to Broadway. The bonds will also help fund drainage improvements included in the street repairs and pay the federal grant match for a project to replace a failing storm main in 18th Street from Market Street to the Galveston Ship Channel and to determine the feasibility of a pump system.

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