The Rating Outlook is Stable.
The bonds are secured by the town's full faith and credit and unlimited taxing authority.
KEY RATING DRIVERS
CONSISTENTLY STABLE FINANCIAL RESULTS:
SOUND RESERVE LEVELS: Reserve levels have consistently been maintained within town policy limits, providing solid financial flexibility.
MODERATE DEBT PROFILE: Debt ratios are expected to remain moderate even with planned future issuances due to rapid principal amortization and restrictive debt policies.
STRONG SOCIOECONOMIC INDICATORS: Wealth levels are above average and unemployment rates are low relative to the state and nation.
MODEST EMPLOYEE BENEFIT COSTS: The town does not offer a traditional pension plan but instead provides a defined contribution plan to its employees (excluding teachers). Costs for this plan and other post-employment benefit (OPEB) obligations are very low.
MAINTENANCE OF FINANCIAL FLEXIBILITY: The rating is sensitive to a shift in credit fundamentals including the town's overall level of financial flexibility. The Stable Outlook reflects Fitch's expectation that such shifts are unlikely.
STRONG FINANCIAL CONDITION
Property tax revenues are the largest revenue source and represent approximately 76% of the fiscal 2014 general fund budget. Intergovernmental revenues, which includes state school aid and grants represents 22% of revenues. The primary expenditure driver is education which represents 70% of the budget.
Fiscal 2013 operating performance (before transfers for capital) was again positive as tax revenues, state aid and building permits exceeded budget. Expenditures performed as expected with a small positive variance. Management continued its practice of funding its capital improvement fund and made transfers out of
POSITIVE RESULTS PROJECTED FOR FISCAL 2014
The fiscal 2014 budget of
The fiscal 2015 budget includes a 2.85% tax rate increase (0.86 mills) and a 3.3% increase (
MARGINAL TAX BASE GROWTH
Prospects for economic expansion have improved as the town has completed the installation of public water and sewer lines and approved zoning regulations in its
MODERATE DEBT PROFILE
Overall debt levels, including capital leases but net of school construction grants, are moderate at
Debt issuance over the next six years is projected at just under
ABOVE-AVERAGE WEALTH LEVELS; LOW UNEMPLOYMENT
LOW EMPLOYEE BENEFIT COSTS
The town benefits from having a defined contribution plan for all of its employees, with the exception of teachers and elected officials, and contributed
Total carrying costs for debt service, defined plan contributions and OPEB were a low 9% of total governmental spending for fiscal 2013.
Additional information is available at 'www.fitchratings.com'.
In addition to the sources of information identified in Fitch's Tax-Supported Rating Criteria, this action was additionally informed by information from Creditscope,
--'Tax-Supported Rating Criteria' (
--'U.S. Local Government Tax-Supported Rating Criteria' (
Tax-Supported Rating Criteria
U.S. Local Government Tax-Supported Rating Criteria
Source: Fitch Ratings
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