Alabaster earns AA bond rating from Standard and Poor’s

Published 2:42 pm Monday, September 16, 2019

The city of Alabaster has a reason to celebrate since Standard and Poor’s Global Ratings recently raised its bond rating from AA- to AA.

According to data from Standard and Poor’s, only 19 percent of cities in Alabama have a rating of AA, AA+ or AAA, and Alabaster is now a part of that group. To put it simply, the improved rating means the cost of borrowing money will be cheaper for the city in the future.

“When we go to borrow money in the future, it will cost us less because this will enable us to get lower interest rates,” said John Haggard, the city’s finance director.

According to a press release from Standard and Poor’s, the AA rating reflects the city’s “strong financial position supported by a framework of consistent budget monitoring and the understanding that its major revenue source, sales tax, is subject to economic swings.”

“The upgrade reflects ongoing property tax base growth and improved economic data resulting in market value per capita comparable to that of the city’s higher rated peers, along with maintenance of very strong available reserves and strengthened liquidity,” said Standard and Poor’s Global Ratings credit analyst Jim Tchou.

The city’s outlook is stable and it is expected to maintain strong finances for the next few years. The release said any future debt plans will not worsen the city’s debt profile.