SARASOTA COUNTY – Fitch Ratings has given an “AA+” rating to the approximate $21.5 million capital improvement revenue bonds Sarasota County will issue later this month to finance its portion of the Atlanta Braves spring training stadium.
The positive rating is the latest indication of the economic health of the organization as determined by Fitch Ratings, a global leader in credit ratings and research. Fitch also affirmed the county’s implied “AAA” rating, indicating that it reflects the strength of the county’s low long-term liabilities and continued sound financial operations.
An “AA+” rating for the county’s currently outstanding capital improvement revenue bonds, Series 2010A and 2010B, of approximately $17.3 million, was also affirmed, along with a stable outlook.
“These strong ratings are a reflection of the responsible stewardship of public tax dollars by our county commission and the continued commitment of our Office of Financial Management staff,” said Sarasota County Administrator Tom Harmer.
In its report, Fitch Ratings noted that “the significant legal revenue raising ability and solid expenditure control provides the county with the ability to maintain stability throughout economic cycles.”
Sarasota County has committed to a contribution of the bonded proceeds of $21.2 million to be repaid with Tourist Development Tax (TDT), or hotel bed tax, toward the construction of the Braves’ new spring training complex in North Port. The county, the team, West Villages, the City of North Port and the state of Florida have partnered to relocate the team to Sarasota County. The stadium is expected to be completed in time for spring training 2019.
For more information, call the Sarasota County Contact Center at 941-861-5000 or visit www.scgov.net.