Moody’s Investors Service has upgraded the Westerville City Schools general obligation unlimited tax (GOULT) bond rating to Aa1, the second highest possible ranking. By doing so, Westerville joins an elite group of just 20 school districts in the State of Ohio who have earned the distinction of receiving the highest or second highest standing. Westerville City Schools was formerly rated Aa2.
The Aa1 GOULT rating reflects the Westerville City School District’s large tax base in the Columbus metropolitan area, strong socioeconomic profile, very healthy financial position, and moderate debt burden. “This is a significant achievement for our district and community,” said Westerville Treasurer/CFO Bart Griffith. “If and when the district would borrow money, the interest rate should be cheaper because of this rating. We earned this upgrade because everyone is working towards the same goal.”
On November 8, 2016, voters converted a temporary local tax into a permanent tax, alleviating the district from having to seek renewal in the future. “Recent voter support of tax increases drove a series of positive operating results…and we expect the district will maintain its strong financial position,” reports Moody’s.
The district’s financial consultant, David J. Conley, President of Rockmill Financial Consulting, LLC of Lancaster, Ohio, says, “Moody’s upgrade is proof that the district’s ongoing efforts to improve its financial condition through prudent management of resident’s taxes is working.” He concluded, “Continued practices of spending wisely and in managing the district’s debt could position Westerville City Schools for yet another upgrade to the highest possible rating of Aaa.”