Fitch Affirms Howard’s AAA Rating in Advance of Bond Sale

Fitch Ratings has assigned ‘AAA’ ratings to the following Howard County general obligation (GO) bonds:

  • $123 million Consolidated Public Improvement Project Bonds, 2021 Series A
  • $26.4 million Metropolitan District Project Bonds, 2021 Series B

The GO bonds are backed by the County’s full faith and credit pledge and its unlimited taxing power. The bonds are scheduled to sell on a competitive basis on February 17, 2021. Proceeds will be used to reimburse the County for the cost of certain public improvements and to repay all or a portion of the County’s outstanding general obligation bond anticipation notes. The Rating Outlook is Stable.

In addition, Fitch has affirmed the following ratings:

  • Issuer Default Rating (IDR) at ‘AAA’
  • Outstanding GO bonds at ‘AAA’

According to the Fitch Ratings analysis:

Fitch expects Howard County to maintain a high level of financial flexibility throughout economic cycles, consistent with a long history of sound operating performance and healthy reserves. The county maintains superior inherent budget flexibility in the form of an unlimited legal ability to raise revenues and solid expenditure flexibility. The county’s financial profile also reflects strong revenue growth prospects from a growing property tax base. Fitch expects the county’s long-term liability burden to remain low.

Read the full analysis for more information.