ATLANTA - Charlotte, N.C., is selling about $340 million of water and sewer revenue bonds starting today.

Banc of America Securities LLC is the book-runner. DEC Associates is the financial adviser.

Treasurer Scott Greer said the bonds will take out commercial paper that was sold as bridge financing over the past two years.

Moody's Investors Service assigned a Aa1 rating to the bonds. Moody's said the rating reflects the strong and growing service area of the system, a large capital improvement program that will incorporate more pay-go funding over the medium term, healthy debt service coverage levels, a solid liquidity position, and the relatively high leverage of the system that is expected to be managed through annual rate increases.

The city carries a triple-A rating on its general obligation bonds.

Greer noted that the city is in the midst of several projects that will require bond financing. Officials are eyeing issuing debt that would cover $230 million of costs at the Charlotte Douglas International Airport.

The city has roughly $887 million of outstanding water and sewer revenue bond debt.

Charlotte's water and sewer enterprise provides retail service to 241,637 water accounts and 222,887 sewer accounts across Mecklenburg County and provides wholesale service to several towns across the region.

Moody's noted that Mecklenburg County's population has grown by a strong 19% since 2000.

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