An improvement in its property tax billing and collection policies won Brown County an improved rating outlook from Standard & Poor’s last week.

The agency boosted its outlook to stable from negative on the A-minus rated Brown County, citing its improved billing procedures, which analysts said could mean reduced deficits in the future.

Located about 50 miles from Indianapolis, Brown County is heavily forested and a popular tourist destination. The county’s population totaled a little more than 15,000 in 2007, and it attracts roughly three million tourists annually and up to 80,000 on the weekends, according to Standard & Poor’s. State parks and forests make up about a third of the county’s land.

The county’s fiscal position is weak but stabilizing, said analysts.

Officials have recently made an effort to collect property taxes on a timelier basis, a move that is expected to strengthen overall finances.

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