Moody’s Investors Service Maintains Top Rating for the Wentzville School District
Moody's Investors Service has released its Annual Issuer Comment Report for the Wentzville School District. In the report, Moody's maintains an Aa2 rating on the District's outstanding general obligation debt, one of the highest ratings for any school district in Missouri.
“We are very pleased with Moody’s rating,” said Richard Angevine, District Chief Financial Officer. “Despite the District’s current budget deficit, the high rating underscores the WSD’s overall sound fiscal position and ability to weather expenses related to the pandemic and what will hopefully be a short-term reduction in funding at the state level.”
According to the report, the favorable rating reflects the District's “stable financial performance supported by maintenance of healthy reserves, a large and growing tax base, and above-average resident income levels.” The report acknowledges the effects of the pandemic on the District’s finances. “These attributes are weighed against an expected modest contraction of operating reserves in fiscal 2020 and 2021 because of the state’s reduction of education funding in response to pressured revenues during the coronavirus pandemic, though reserves are anticipated to remain healthy.”
The report also cites the District’s conservative fiscal management and governance as a reason for the strong rating. The District closed fiscal 2019 with $67.5 million in general fund liquidity, representing 35.5% of general fund revenues. Details about the District’s budget for 2020-2021 can be found on the WSD website.
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