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City of Tampa Receives AAA Bond Rating from Moody’s, S & P, and Fitch for Water and Wastewater Systems

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For the first time since the great recession, the City of Tampa received AAA Bond Rating for the City’s water and wastewater systems from Moody’s, S &P, and Fitch.


“These ratings should not be taken lightly,” said Mayor Jane Castor. “These stable outlooks are due to a decade of hard work, ingenuity, and a commitment to strong fiscal stewardship by our entire City of Tampa team. As we move forward, we will continue to remain steadfast and laser focused on providing world class service to all of our residents.”


“The stable outlook reflects the system's healthy financial position along with management's commitment to annual rate increases, large population base served by the utility, and adequate system water supply and water and sewer treatment capacity enabling the maintenance of stable coverage levels in the near term.” – Moody’s Investor Service


“The long-term rating reflects our opinion of the system's extremely strong enterprise and financial risk profiles. The enterprise risk profile remains at extremely strong even as we assessed the effects of COVID-19 and the recession on the city's economic base. Despite this conservative view of the expected economic base's performance by S&P Global Ratings, a recovery by the city quicker than our expectations will ensure that the economic assessment remains very strong. The rating also reflects our assessment of management as strong, demonstrated by policies and procedures that have produced consistently very strong financial metrics. Management has begun, with this issue, funding over $2.8 billion in water and wastewater improvements and expansions over the next 20 years. To do so while maintaining strong financial metrics, it has enacted a 20-year rate increase. The recently approved rate plan will implement a first-time base charge, which over time, will provide resilience to the existing demand-based rate structure. It is these practices and the utility's strong liquidity position that will keep the rating stable over the next two years. Therefore, the outlook is stable.”-- S & P Global Ratings


“The system's very strong financial profile reflects its leverage ratio of -0.1x in fiscal 2019 as well as liquidity and Fitch-calculated coverage of full obligations (COFO) that are expected to remain robust and neutral to the assessment. Given additional debt plans, Fitch's forward look produces a leverage ratio that trends up over the next five years, but is expected to remain below 5.0x.” – Fitch Ratings