The Regional Municipality of Durham


News Release

Durham Region maintains Triple A credit rating from Moody's

WHITBY, ON February 12, 2014 – The Regional Municipality of Durham has once again maintained its Triple A credit rating with Moody's Investors Service of New York (Moody's). This identifies the Region as one of only eight select Canadian municipalities to have been awarded a Triple A rating by this credit rating agency.

"Durham Region's Triple A credit rating is a testament to the resolve of council's long-standing commitment to support prudent financial policies and planning," said Roger Anderson, Regional Chair and Chief Executive Officer. "This rating shows why our organization is a provincial leader in fiscal responsibility and integrity."

According to Moody's, this credit rating reflects a strong commitment to multi-year planning: "The Aaa debt rating assigned to the Regional Municipality of Durham is supported by a long record of sound financial planning based on prudent assumptions, sizable reserves and a relatively low debt burden. The region's conservative fiscal management and multi-year planning provides the region with on-going balanced operations and financial flexibility."

Each year, the business planning process begins with the development of a five-year economic and financial forecast, which is a comprehensive review of multi-year operating and capital pressures and available financing across the Region's major program areas.

"This rating gives expert, independent assurance to Durham Region residents that their tax dollars are managed prudently and responsibly," said Regional Councillor Don Mitchell, Chair of the Finance & Administration Committee. 

"The Region relies on its practice of long-term financial planning to address potential fiscal challenges before they arise, and limits the Region's exposure to future market-related risks," said Jim Clapp, Commissioner of Finance. "Prudent financial policies and planning allow the Region to retain financial flexibility and maintain adequate funding for unforeseen expenditures today, as well as over the longer term."

As part of its report, Moody's also highlighted the Region's strong, local, diversified economy as a major strength, a growing institutional base (including a significantly expanded post-secondary education sector), and health-care facilities, most notably the Durham Regional Cancer Centre. This credit rating is significant. It not only provides confidence to Regional stakeholders, but also significantly reduces the cost of borrowing when the Region requires debt financing for a portion of its capital expenditures.

This is the second notable achievement in 2014. In January, the Region received a Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada award for its 2013 Business Planning and Budget process and documentation.

 

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