Rochester Community Schools Credit Rating Surpasses Previous Indicators

The Rochester Community School District is proud to announce a new long-term credit rating designation of AA- with a stable outlook for the $128 million unlimited-tax general obligation school bonds.  The rating was issued by Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services.

Rochester Community Schools

Rochester Community Schools

“The Board of Education’s commitment to address the district’s financial challenges was a major contributing factor to the improved rating,” said Assistant Superintendent for Business Dana Taylor.  “It is truly a privilege to work with a leadership team who is willing to make the tough decisions to ensure the district’s financial success.”

The AA rating is the second highest assessment possible and indicates that obligations are of high quality with a very low credit risk.  The previous rating for the district was AA- with a negative outlook.

A good credit rating suggests that the district could borrow more money at a lower interest rate because it is demonstrated to be less of a risk for investors.  It also provides the district with the ability to potentially forego the need for purchasing insurance on the bonds, which can result in additional savings.

“The fact that Rochester Community Schools achieved an upgrade to its credit rating when so many other districts are struggling is a testament to Dr. Shaner and the leadership team’s strategic vision and ability to see the big picture,” said Board of Education President Pat Piskulich, Ph.D.  “We also recognize the efforts of Dana Taylor whose outstanding business management expertise helped put our fiscal house in such good order.”

According to Standard & Poor’s summary report, the rating reflects their opinion of the district’s:  “Access to wider Oakland County economies; Very strong income and extremely strong market value per capita; Overall stable enrollment, which ties directly to revenue; and Strong budget flexibility, evidenced by strong reserves.”

On Dec. 7, 2015, the Board of Education authorized the sale of bonds. It is anticipated that $128 million in bonds will be offered around the Jan. 19 timeframe, and a second series of bonds totaling $57 million will be sold in May 2019. Money will be invested to match the estimated construction cash flow needs over the next five years.

The bond projects will focus on developing and enhancing assets, to include state-of-the-art technology and facilities, and improve student safety and school security.

“As we move forward, every action will be deliberate, strategic, and focused on safety and efficiencies throughout the entire RCS organization. Being good stewards of bond dollars is both an expectation and obligation to our community,” said Superintendent Robert Shaner, Ph.D.

The community will be kept well informed on the progress of the bond projects through the district’s website, social media, and email.

 

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