WISNIEWSKI: MOODY’S ‘CREDIT NEGATIVE’ VIEW OF 2 PERCENT CAP OMINOUS PORTENT FOR NJ TOWNS

Municipalities Up for Bond Rating Review could be Negatively Impacted by Cap

(SAYREVILLE) — Assemblyman John S. Wisniewski (D-Middlesex) issued the following statement Wednesday after it was reported that Westfield, a Union County municipality with a median household income of $146,110 — more than twice the national average – had its debt rating reduced by Moody’s Investors Service:

“Moody’s downgrading of Westfield’s bond rating should sound a warning klaxon for every other town in the state.

“If Westfield – one of the most affluent towns in New Jersey – had its bond rating weakened over fears that the town may not be able to balance its budget, what can the majority of our state’s 566 municipalities, whose residents are not as financially well off as Westfield’s, expect when it comes time for their bond ratings to be reviewed?

“Any projected property tax savings towns were expecting under the 2 percent cap will be offset by higher interest rates and borrowing costs from reduced bond ratings.

“Moody’s actions — and their categorizing of the 2 percent cap as ‘credit negative’ for towns — only continue to reinforce the fact that the only thing Gov. Christie’s cap is good for is soundbytes.”