|Advertised as an $8 Million dollar project, Unitrade Stadium came in at a whopping $23 Million dollars.|
A couple of months ago, the city patted itself on the back for it's high credit ratings. Although Moody's has rated the city's credit rating at Aa2 (behind Aaa and Aa1), it's summary does caution about the cities substantial debt.
This is not surprising, considering the Mega-million projects recently undertaken: Unitrade Stadium, new $$$ golf course, high-priced recreation centers the city can't even afford to operate. Of course, the city keeps adding to the Arena's outstanding debt service.
Instead of better managing it's spending, they city recently acted to raise just about any and all their fees under the excuse "we haven't raised them in a while". When city council questioned a few of the rate hikes, they were quickly silenced by the city manager.
SUMMARY RATINGS RATIONALE
The rating of Aa2 reflects return to positive growth in the city's large tax base and relatively diverse economy which continues to benefit from cross border trade with Mexico, stable financial operations with maintained healthy reserves, and an above average debt burden that remains manageable.
The stable outlook reflects expected modest continued growth in the city's large tax base in the near term, as well as our belief the city will maintain conservative budgeting practices and monitor expenditures closely to ensure financial operations remain stable and current reserve levels are maintained.
The Certificates of Obligation Series A and B are secured by an ad valorem tax levied annually, within the limits prescribed by law against all taxable property in the city and a pledge of limited surplus revenues of the city's International Toll Bridge System. The Contractual Obligations are payable from an ad valorem tax levied annually within the limits prescribed by law, against all taxable property in the city.
* Return to positive growth in the city's large tax base
* Stable financial operations and maintained healthy reserve position
CHALLENGES (aka Weaknesses)
* Historically weak socioeconomic profile
* Above average debt burden with below average payout