Brian Pugh: Croton-on-Hudson Keeps Strong Bond Rating Despite COVID-19

To The Editor:

I am happy to report that, despite the unprecedented challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Village of Croton-on-Hudson had its Aa2 bond rating affirmed by Moody’s investor services.  The Village has maintained an Aa2 rating since 2011 when it increased from A1.

Bond ratings are independent opinions on the creditworthiness of a bond issuer. They are for bond issuers, like local governments, what credit scores are for individuals. Just as credit bureaus evaluate a person’s income and debt, bond rating agencies will look at an issuer’s finances to determine its ability to repay its obligations. A stronger rating, indicating lower risk, is associated with a lower interest rate.

Bonds rated A or higher by Moody’s, as Croton’s are, are judged to be of high quality and are subject to very low credit risk. Croton-on-Hudson shared this strong Aa2 rating with other villages in the region, including Ardsley, Briarcliff Manor, Dobbs Ferry, Ossining and Pleasantville.

The Village’s unchanged rating, in the face of the challenges of the pandemic, is a testament to the fiscal management of the Village’s staff and the Board of Trustees.  

After the COVID-19 pandemic struck in March, the Board worked with the staff to reduce the operating expense budget by $415,388, cutting 40+ line items, and the capital budget by $4,701,675 from the tentative budget.  At the most recent meeting of the Board, we authorized the Village Treasurer to amend the 2020-2021 General Fund Budget in the amount of $329,298.75 to account for reduced revenues and expenditures due to the COVID-19 pandemic

The Board of Trustees is committed to protecting taxpayers and preserving the fiscal strength of our Village, so that the village government continues to have the resources necessary to serve the public.  We are prepared to make additional adjustments as necessary to accommodate changing economic circumstances.

Sincerely,

Brian Pugh, Mayor

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