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Favorable debt rating helps save money for Yumans
A financially healthy city helps keep more money in the pockets of city residents, and a recent report indicates that is what the future holds for Yuma.
The report came from Standard & Poor's, the noted financial firm that rates investment status and potential. It confirmed that the city of Yuma government still has a high A+ bond rating status, as has been the case for years. But it upgraded that rating somewhat by moving it from “cautionary” to “stable.”
Many cities across the nation have not fared nearly as well in recent years due to the impact of the Great Recession and poor fiscal policies. In fact, some cities — including major ones — have been forced to declare bankruptcy.
Fortunately, our city has weathered that fiscal storm well, as indicated by S&P's rating.
It reflects fiscal restraint and strong fiscal policies maintained by city leaders — both elected and unelected. City Administrator Greg Wilkinson also credits city personnel. “All the employees have done a great job of watching expenditures and the rating bears that out,” he said.
It is the taxpayers who ultimately benefit because a high financial rating translates into favorable rates for city indebtedness. The rating was specifically for the city's water and wastewater revenue bonds but also affects future bonding. Bond buyers look at the S&P rating when making their decisions and the higher the rating, the lower the rate charged to the city.
Even a slightly lower rate can mean huge savings for a large project.
It appears the lingering effects of the recession are coming to an end. It is likely our city is on the verge of a renewed era of growth. Our city goes into that period on sound financial footing. Yuma residents can be thankful our leaders have been fiscally responsible while meeting the needs of our growing community.