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Minneapolis gets AAA rating on new bond offerings

Three new bond issues totaling $36 million have received AAA ratings from Fitch Ratings, reports Finance and Commerce.

And the AAA rating was reaffirmed for the city’s $1.1 billion in outstanding debt.

Said the journal:

The primary risk to the city continues to be reductions in state aid which are likely to continue, according to the raters. But Minneapolis’ broad economy, consistent financial performance and moderate tax-supported debt levels make repayment prospects solid.

Fitch noted that Minneapolis’ general fund has produced consistent operating surpluses, yielding an unreserved balance slightly above the city’s policy of 15 percent of the following years’ budgeted revenues. That balance dropped to 13.5 percent of fiscal 2009 revenues this year, but that shortfall was due to the unexpected state aid cuts.

In 2009, the city reduced its spending by about $16 million through the elimination of vacant positions and limited reductions in services, while it enhanced revenues with small fee increases and a one-time transfer of proceeds from an asset sale several years ago.

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