issued a statement yesterday announcing it received an "Aaa" bond rating from Moody's Investor Services.
"This rating was achieved through the District's careful fiscal planning," stated Superintendent of Schools Dr. Frank Alvarez in the district's electronic communication. "It is positive for our District and our taxpayers, as the lower interest rates associated with this bond rating will result in greater savings."
The district has issued $14.1 million in refunding serial bonds. Funds from a recently approved bond referendum will be used to finance classroom additions to the middle and high school buildings in anticipation of increased student population.
The designation is the investor rating firm's highest. Moody's defines "Aaa" as follows: "Obligations rated Aaa are judged to be of the highest quality, subject to the lowest level of credit risk."
The school district estimates its current tax base is approximately $5.7 billion.
Last week, Moody's issued an "Aaa" rating with "a negative outlook" on Westchester County's $21.5 million in general obligation refunding serial bonds, and an "Aaa" rating on $991.3 million of outstanding county and county-guaranteed debt. Moody's also issued an "Aa1" - high quality -rating on $106.9 million in outstanding lease revenue bonds. According to Moody's statement on the county's debt, "the outlook on both the general obligation and lease revenue bonds is negative."
General obligation bonds are generally considered an especially safe investment instrument because the issuer vows to repay their debt no matter what- whether by raising taxes or even liquidating assets. In contrast, revenue bonds are paid back from the profits remaining from the stated investment purpose- for example, tolls in excess of the cost of a bridge or other public project financed by the bond.
The Rye City School Board voted to refinance the District's current debt load in June to take advantage of lower interest rates. The move, according to the District, will generate "savings of over $100,000 a year for the next 10 years in annual debt service payments."
According to Moody's, the district has $27 million of parity general obligation debt.