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Rating agency Fitch upgrades Tacoma city bonds

The city of Tacoma announced this week that Fitch Ratings has upgraded the city’s outlook from stable to positive.

“The upgraded rating reflects the fact that the City has maintained balanced General Fund operations with moderate debt levels and reserves that have nearly tripled since 2012,” the City announced in a release.

The ratings service “also recognizes continued management improvements that have been made, including the prioritization of long-term planning, prudent use of one-time funds and institutionalized processes to monitor budget performance,” the release stated.

“This is great news and the result of making tough but necessary policy decisions,” said Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland. “The improving economy accounts for a portion of the change in the city’s financial position, and sustainable financial management has been key. Beginning in 2012, the City implemented a variety of policy measures and planning processes targeting long-term fiscal stability.”

The city of Tacoma’s $20 million unlimited tax general obligation (ULTGO) bonds continue to be rated at A+; $139.2 million limited tax general obligation (LTGO) bonds at ‘A’; and $26.6 million convention center and parking revenue bonds at A+.

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