(Hauppauge, NY-October 8, 2014) Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone and Comptroller Joe Sawicki today announced that the County’s improved fiscal outlook has resulted in far better interest rates than the County received just one year ago, saving taxpayers $4.2 million over the life of the bonds. Suffolk County issued $52.54 million in Series B bonds at an interest rate of 2.44%. Just one year ago, that same borrowing was issued at an interest rate of 3.47%.
“Lower interest rates demonstrate that the market has confidence in Suffolk County and that saves millions in taxpayer dollars,” County Executive Bellone said. “The message this sends is that we must continue to support fiscally responsible policies that protect taxpayers.”
“In my opinion, the markets are acknowledging that Suffolk County has turned the corner on its budget issues and is moving toward fiscal stability,” Comptroller Sawicki said.
Suffolk County issued the bonds to meet a number of capital needs, including strengthening and improving county roads, infrastructure improvements at Suffolk County Community College, energy conservation improvements, highway maintenance equipment, dredging and rehabilitation of county bridges.
The lower interest rates come on the heels of Suffolk County’s credit rating being affirmed by all three credit ratings after County Executive Bellone issued his 2015 budget. That budget is under the New York State property tax cap, continues to freeze general fund taxes, provides for an historic tax freeze in the Southwest Sewer District and dramatically reduces the deficit while protecting and enhancing vital services for Suffolk County residents. Notably, the budget takes a dramatic step to move the County towards structural balance by decreasing use of “one-shot” revenue sources by $35 million from the prior year.
“I am glad to see the market responding well to our fiscally responsible budget,” Bellone added.