Moody’s Investors Service has upgraded Fox Valley Park District’s outstanding general obligation (GO) rating to Aa1 from Aa3, which repositions Fox Valley from “high grade” to “prime,” just one level below the top rating.
Illinois Park Districts as a sector receive an overall rating of Aa from Moody’s as an institutional framework score. Fox Valley Park District’s superior Aa1 rating signifies even more confidence in its future ability to raise revenues and decrease expenditures.
“Our vision as a Park District includes a commitment to being fiscally responsible to our residents, a pledge our Board and staff follow every day,” said Board President Chuck Anderson. “This is welcome confirmation that we consistently maintain good fund balances, budget carefully and adhere to sound fiscal practices on behalf of our resident taxpayers.”
In the report, Moody’s noted that the rating reflects the Fox Valley Park District’s large and diverse tax base, healthy liquidity, slightly above average socioeconomic profile, low debt burden with rapid amortization and a low unfunded pension burden.
Executive Director Jim Pilmer credited Diana Erickson, senior director of finance and administration, “for her outstanding financial management that helped us achieve this highly desirable rating” as the District worked through the challenges and financial restraints of a six-year tax levy freeze.
“Our economic development is also a credit to our collaboration with the villages of Montgomery and North Aurora, the city of Aurora and the Forest Preserve District of Kane County,” said Pilmer.
Pilmer noted that the elevated rating will have a positive impact on the Park District’s ability to borrow funds and refinance debt at lower rates, which translates into reduced tax bills for residents.
“Our excellent credit rating is the result of sound financial management and our commitment to fiscal prudence today and for future generations,” said Pilmer.