AISD Scores High on Credit Report Card

AISD Scores High on Financial Report Card
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July 25, 2016--The Amarillo ISD has earned a very favorable score from a leading source of independent credit ratings. Standard & Poor’s Global Ratings (S&P) issued the AAA program rating and AA+ underlying rating to AISD and cited a stable outlook.  

Credit ratings quantify the risk associated with issuing debt. AISD’s rating signals a high likelihood the District will repay debts in full and on time. The AA+ underlying rating is the highest issued by S&P Global to school districts and only a small percentage of Texas school districts rank at that level. “We’re one of about three percent of school districts in Texas currently with an AA+ underlying rating. That’s only 18 school districts,” said AISD Chief Financial Officer Pati Buchenau. “The key factor in why the AA+ rating is important is because it grades the stand alone quality of the district, without being backed by an insurer.” The AA+ underlying rating and associated reassurance can save the District money by enabling it to attract a larger group of lenders and competitive interest rates. 

Indicators including the District’s status as a regional hub, steady property tax base and enrollment growth, strong financial management and reserve levels, and low overall debt burden, were reflected in the AA+ underlying rating.

The other S&P Global grade included in AISD’s credit profile, the AAA program rating, signifies S&P Global’s assessment of the strength and stability of the Texas Permanent School Fund (PSF), which guarantees bonds issued by Texas school districts. Bonds rated AAA are considered exceptionally creditworthy.

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