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MiraCosta Community College District Earns Top Rating from Moody’s & S&P

Oceanside CA— MiraCosta Community College earns the highest ratings from both Moody’s Investors Services (Moody’s) and Standard & Poor’s Global (S&P). Moody’s and S&P assigned MiraCosta College a AAA, the highest issuer credit rating.

Both agencies recognized the district’s healthy financial position, sustainable tax base of North County San Diego, leadership and solid student enrollment. According to the Moody’s report, the MiraCosta College assigned rating “reflects the district’s very large and growing assessed value (AV) and strong resident wealth levels, benefiting from its location on the very desirable northern San Diego County coast and supporting the district’s deep entrenchment in community-funded (basic aid) status. The rating further reflects the district’s robust financial position, with strong fund balances and liquidity. The rating incorporates the district’s strong and prudent management, low debt levels and an average pension liability.”

Meanwhile, the S&P report explains a key factor in the credit rating was the district’s strong Financial Management Assessment (FMA). The report elaborates that “an FMA of ‘strong’ indicates financial practices are strong, well embedded, and likely sustainable. Key management practices and policies includes frequent review of the budget with board participation, as well as realistic and well-grounded revenue and expenditure assumptions.”  The report summarizes in stating “the stable outlook reflects our expectation that the district’s available fund balance levels will remain at a very strong level.  We do not expect to change the rating within our two-year outlook horizon.”

MiraCosta College President Dr. Sunita V. Cooke comments “the favorable reports are reflective of the dedicated work of the district’s staff and faculty who serve our students and community daily. A special appreciation goes to the Fiscal Services department who compiled the essential data to ensure the report reflected all the positive assets of the college.

The high ratings come as MiraCosta College prepares to issue its first round of general obligation bonds authorized in 2016 for Proposition MM, which was approved for $455 million by the District’s local taxpayers. The bond money will go towards modernizing aging facilities and upgrading instructional technology. Through the implementation of the Facilities Master Plan, the District will construct career training facilities for science, nursing, health care, engineering and skilled trades; improve job training, counseling and support services for veterans; modernize instructional technology in math, science and technology; repair or replace leaky roofs, worn-out floors, outdated restrooms, faulty electrical systems and deteriorating plumbing lines; and improve access for students with disabilities.

“These high credit ratings are a recognition of MiraCosta’s fiscal prudence and allow us to continue to be good stewards of tax payer dollars as a higher rating means lower borrowing costs and hence savings to tax payers” explains Dr. David Broad, board president.

For MiraCosta College’s complete Moody’s Investor Service credit report, click here.

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