Fairfax County Sells AAA-Rated Bonds


Fairfax County Office of Public Affairs
12000 Government Center Parkway, Suite 551
Fairfax, VA 22035-0065
Contact: Merni Fitzgerald, Director of Public Affairs
703-324-3187, TTY 711, Fax 703-324-2010
Media Pager: 703-324-NEWS (6397)
publicaffairs@fairfaxcounty.gov

Jan. 23, 2007

Fairfax County Sells AAA-Rated Bonds

On Jan. 18, Fairfax County sold $234.6 million in Aaa/AAA/AAA-rated tax-free general obligation 1-to-20-year bonds for public improvements at the fifth-lowest interest rate achieved by the county in the 31 years since the AAA rating was awarded.

The bonds were sold to Merrill Lynch & Company at a true interest rate of 4.115 percent. This interest rate represents a differential of nine basis points under the Bond Buyer Index, which stood at 4.21 percent on Jan. 18. The lowest rate the county has ever received for 20-year bonds was 3.54 percent in March 2004.

The county received eight bids for the bonds with a high bid of 4.161 percent. The closeness of the bids is an indication of the highly competitive nature of the sale. The sale of new public improvement bonds will provide total proceeds of $239.54 million for schools ($129.49 million); public safety facilities ($51.75 million); parks and park facilities ($15 million); public library facilities ($14 million); transportation improvements and facilities ($24.8 million); human services facilities ($2.5 million); and commercial and redevelopment area improvements ($2 million). Voter authorization for the sale of these bonds was given by referenda in elections held from 1988 to 2006.

With this bond issue, Fairfax County maintains its status as a top-rated issuer of tax-free securities from Moody’s Investors Service, Standard and Poor’s Corporation and Fitch Ratings.  Fairfax County has the highest credit rating possible for a local government – Aaa from Moody’s Investors Service, AAA from Standard and Poor’s and AAA from Fitch Ratings. As of Oct. 27, 2006, only six states, 22 counties and 23 cities have Triple-A ratings from all three investor services. The credit ratings enable Fairfax County to sell bonds at favorable interest rates compared to those of municipalities not so rated, resulting in substantial savings for county taxpayers over the life of the bonds. 

Since 1978, the county has saved approximately $245.89 million on bond sales due to its Triple-A rating on new public improvement bonds. Including refunding sales, the county has saved more than $346.31 million as a result of the AAA rating.

According to Fitch Ratings, “the county’s finances are well managed, adhering to long-standing policies guidelines, and include detailed planning for capital and operating needs.”

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For more news and information, visit www.fairfaxcounty.gov/news.

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