Moody's Investors Service upgraded Erie County, Pa., to Aa2 from Aa3. The move affects $128 million of outstanding debt, including $83.6 million of county-issued debt and $44 million of guaranteed debt issued through the Erie County Convention Center Authority.
The rating agency, which assigned a stable outlook, cited two years of healthy operating surpluses and a projected surplus in fiscal 2012. It also pointed to Erie's large tax base with below-average wealth levels, manageable debt burden and healthy general fund reserves.
Recent declines in the county's full valuation pose a challenge, Moody's said.