Moody's Investors Service has upgraded Nye County's issuer rating to A2 from A3. Concurrently, Moody's upgraded the rating on the County's General Obligation Limited Tax Bonds, Series 2010B to A2 from A3. The rating action affects approximately $20.68 million bonds rated debt outstanding.
The credit rating is used in the calculation of rates for new debt and refinanced debt at better interest rates, saving taxpayers money.
"The upgrade to A2 on the County's issuer rating reflects the County's improved general fund reserves, a reversal in trend following multiple years of narrow operations supported by tax base growth," the credit ratings, research, and risk analysis service stated in its report. "Management's prudent budgeting practices have built stronger reserves to fund county operations."
Savannah Rucker, the County's Comptroller, said the upgrade gives the County more financial flexibility through lower interest rates.
"The upgrade in credit rating will enable Nye County to begin the process of refinancing existing debt, and look into securing new debt for several large projects coming down the pipeline," Rucker said. "Pairing the improved credit rating with the current market for interest rates, the County will be able to secure a cost reduction of interest expense in future fiscal years while continuing to fulfill the County's overall plan to be more efficient stewards of tax dollars."
The County was issued a $21.83 million, 30-year Jail Bond in August 2010 for the construction of the Nye County Sheriff's Office detention center in Pahrump. The current interest rate is 6.08 percent.
Rucker added Nye County had come a long way since the economic downturn of 2008.
"The improvement of the credit rating for Nye County is the direct result of a well informed and effective Board of County Commissioners, prudent management, proper financial planning, and well informed and efficient staff," she said.
The upgrade to A2 on the County's general obligation limited tax bonds reflects the credit profile of the County and the strength of the full faith and credit pledge in Nevada, which Moody's rates at the same level as the issuer ratings of local governments in the state.