For the fifth straight year, Islip town’s financial status earned an Aaa rating from Moody’s Analytics, town Supervisor Angie Carpenter announced.
Citing a substantial interest in housing and a rapid turnover of homes from empty nesters to young families, Moody’s said Islip is in good shape, in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Moody’s stable outlook for Islip anticipates “continued strong operations given prudent management and continued growth and diversification in the local economy.”
“Financial management is strong as evidenced by consistently sound reserves, and an informal policy to maintain unassigned reserves above 10%,” according to the agency’s press release. “Islip benefits from a sizeable tax base, conveniently located in Suffolk County near several major metro centers.
“The town will continue to benefit from its location near several major employment areas.”
Banks and other entities in the financial services industry use Moody’s financial ratings to determine the financial health of an organization. Positive bond ratings translate to the most favorable interest rates when going to the bond market.
Islip’s rating was first upgraded to Aaa — the highest rating that can be assigned to a municipality — in March 2016, then was reaffirmed Aaa in September 2016, September 2017, October 2018 and April 2019.
“As we prepare for the 2021 budget, we continue working closely with our commissioners to tighten budgets as necessary,” Carpenter said. “We have continued our zero-based budgeting to our spending plans, assuring that no projects move forward unless they are deemed truly essential.
“These are the strategies that enabled us to get the initial upgrade early in 2016, and which we continue to adhere to as we move forward through these unprecedented challenging times,” she added.
Islip Comptroller Joseph Ludwig said, “The goal always has to be, to maximize our revenues and decrease our expenditures.”