Moody’s Investors Service has announced that it has given Miami-Dade County Public Schools an A1 rating on a proposed refinancing of $105.7 million Certificates of Participation (COPs). Moody’s also has changed the District’s outlook from negative to stable.
“The announcement this week by Moody’s is a testament to the sound fiscal practices of Miami-Dade County Public Schools,”said Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho. “The A1 rating and elevation to stable reflect the District’s strong financial stability and solvent budgetary decisions and positive economic outlook.”
The change in outlook to stable recognizes that,for the foreseeable future, the district will manage at lower levels of fund balance than is consistent with the rating category and that the rating is unlikely to change in the near- to mid-term given improving trends in the local economy and a return to balanced operations. The report also mentions the ongoing issue with tax collections, related to the 2 year lag in the Value Adjustment Board finalizing the tax roll, as a major reason for previous revenue shortfalls resulting in lower-than-expected fund balances.
Moody’s commended the district’s demonstrated willingness to make budget adjustments to meet funding levels and stated that the district's management team is strong, tenured and implements industry-wide best practices. Additionally, management's conservative budgeting practices support the likelihood of long-term financial stability.
At the same, Moody's has affirmed the Aa3 underlying rating on the District's outstanding general obligation bonds and the A1 rating on its outstanding certificates of participation.
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