Olmsted County receives Aaa/AAA ratings from Moody's and S&P

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Despite economic uncertainties and other challenges due to the pandemic, in 2020, Olmsted County once again received a Aaa/AAA credit rating (with a stable outlook) – the highest possible rating – from both Moody’s Investors Service and S&P Global Ratings. The rating designation equates to significant taxpayer savings by lowering the cost of borrowing for the county. Olmsted County received the Aaa/AAA designation for the first time in 2002. 

“For the past several years, Olmsted County has been proud to be included in the prestigious group of just 3% of counties in the nation with a AAA credit rating,” stated Olmsted County Board of Commissioners Chair Matt Flynn. 

Various criteria are used to evaluate credit: outlook, economy, management, budgetary performance, budgetary flexibility, liquidity, debt and contingent liability, and institutional framework. 

As stated in the S&P report: “The county has an experienced, highly knowledgeable management team, as evidenced by a long history of responsible budget development and monitoring, which we believe will continue based on management’s forward-looking perspective.” S&P also noted “Olmsted County is well-positioned to navigate the possible impact of the pandemic in the short to medium term” given its reserve levels and lack of reliance on sales tax.  

Moody’s noted Olmsted County’s credit strengths as a “very large and growing tax base,” “high resident incomes,” “strong financial operations and significant revenue raising flexibility,” and “healthy reserves and liquidity.” 

“Our AAA credit rating can be attributed to Olmsted County’s commitment to financial stewardship – making sound financial decisions based on strong financial policies and practices,” stated Olmsted County Chief Financial Officer Wilfredo Román Cátala. 

2021 Olmsted County budget timeline

The Olmsted County Board of Commissioners will be voting on the 2021 Olmsted County budget in December 2020. 
  • September 15, 2020: The board adopted a preliminary 0% levy increase. 
  • December 3, 2020: 2021 Truth in Taxation (TnT) presentation before the board which contains information about Olmsted County’s budget and levy. 
  • December 15, 2020: Final 2021 budget goes before the board for approval.