S&P Global Ratings announced last week the Town of Southampton has maintained its AAA credit rating, the highest possible.
“This rating is the result of fiscal discipline throughout Town Hall operations, and extraordinary guidance and hard work on the part of our financial staff,” Supervisor Jay Schneiderman said.
Southampton, with a population of 57,542, currently owes $17.2 million, labeled general obligation. The tax base, according to the report, is anticipated to grow to $73.7 billion, and a market value per capital of over $1 million, giving the town access to a deep tax base to support its operations.
According to a statement released by S&P, the rating reflects the agency’s view of numerous factors, including the town’s economy; management; resiliency; budgetary performance and flexibility; liquidity; debt and contingent liability profile; pension and other post-employment benefits; and institutional framework — all of which were identified as “strong” or “very strong” in the agency’s report. As part of the rating the town was also assigned a “stable” outlook.
“Its [Southampton Town’s] strong financial policies and practices have supported strong operations since 2008,” the report read. “Additionally, the town has taken steps to mitigate environmental risks given its extensive shoreline along the Atlantic Ocean. It has maintained strong performance through conservative budgeting and financial forecasting.”
“This upgrade reaffirms the fiscal practices and leadership that Supervisor Jay Schneiderman and the town board have established and followed throughout the past several years,” Comptroller Leonard Marchese said. “Strong reserves will prove invaluable in these uncertain times, and allow the town to continue essential services uninterrupted.”