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Moody’s Upgrades City of Tacoma’s Bond Rating

Moody’s Upgrades City of Tacoma’s Bond Rating
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jan. 27, 2015

MEDIA CONTACTS
Gwen Schuler, Media and Communications, gschuler@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-5160
Megan Snow, Media and Communications, mmarquett@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-5051

Moody’s Upgrades City of Tacoma’s Bond Rating


Moody’s Investor Service has assigned the City of Tacoma an A1 rating for its $20.8 million Solid Waste Revenue Bonds for 2015 and upgraded the City’s rating on $58.1 million of outstanding parity bonds.

The upgraded rating means the City’s Environmental Services Department and its customers will save a half a percent on the interest rate for the new bonds, which in current markets would be approximately a $100,000 savings on interest, according to Michael P. Slevin, Environmental Services Director.

The negotiation of the sale of the bonds is expected to be completed in February. The bonds will raise $22 million for Solid Waste capital improvements, which include the purchase of new hydraulic hybrid collection trucks.

The new collection trucks are estimated to reduce diesel use by 40 percent per truck. The more fuel efficient trucks will save money and reduce emissions, shrinking the City’s carbon footprint and protecting the environment.

The City could also refinance the 2006 bond, which funded construction of the Recovery and Transfer Building, using the new A1 rating, yet that decision has not yet been made.

The bond sale ordinance passed by the City Council on Jan. 13 currently allows that option depending on market conditions.

“This upgrade presented by Moody's is an reaffirmation of the dedicated Solid Waste Management staff working to produce the best value and service for the Tacoma rate payer,” Slevin said. “Special thanks should be given to our Finance Department staff whose hard work made this upgrade possible.”
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