Phenix City happy with improved credit rating, financial status

Phenix City happy with improved credit rating, financial status

PHENIX CITY, AL (WTVM) - In his State of the City Speech in January, Mayor Eddie Lowe said the city is financially strong, and the new rating from Standard & Poor's only strengthens his statement.

Esteemed ratings agency Standard & Poor's says Phenix City and their finances are in a great spot. They have reaffirmed the City's AA- credit rating and wrote a positive report about Phenix City's standing.

"The report talks about Phenix City's very good management, our very strong budgeting practices and equity. It's one of the best credit reports that any entity I've ever worked for in 35 years has ever received, and we're very proud of it," Phenix City Director of Finance Stephen Smith said.

This rating works like any other by helping the city borrow money through bonding at a lower interest rate.

"We're saving over $100,000 primarily because of our high credit rating and the report we get from Standard & Poor's will save us about a half of percent," Smith said.

Phenix City's push to develop along the Chattahoochee River, has made a major impact after facing financial issues in past. Smith says being a part of the Columbus-metropolitan area as well as being surrounded by thriving Alabama cities has set Phenix City apart in the eyes of the New York-based company.

"They look at us as being a part of that area-wide economy and it is a very strong economy at this point in time," Smith said.

According to city officials, after facing financial challenges in the past, the city is trying to make a comeback with a lot of development along the Chattahoochee River.

"Standard & Poor's is in effect a Rating Agencies that does credit ratings for businesses and governmental entities," Smith said. "We're very proud of the report, I mean when you get a New York rating agency…when they talk about and mention us and say that we are very strong, that's strong language from them."

He also emphasized the completion of important economic development projects in the city like the Marriott on the River, the Zipline, Idle Hour Park and the redevelopment of the Phenix Plaza.

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