Standard & Poor’s upgraded its underlying rating on York County’s general obligation bonds to AA from AA-minus. The outlook remains stable.

The upgrade is based on the county’s “strong economic growth,” according to Standard & Poor’s. The rating also reflects the county’s diverse tax base, good wealth and income levels, adequate financial position, and moderate debt burden with limited capital needs.

“The county has a steady local economy and good wealth levels,” said credit analyst Nicole Ridberg. “We expect that development in the county will continue due to its strategic location. While the county’s financial position declined somewhat in fiscal 2005, we also expect that management will rebuild reserve levels in coming years.”

The county, located on the border with Maryland, over the past five years has seen an influx of residents relocating from the Baltimore area. It has had a 7.7% increase in population between 2002 and 2007, whereas Pennsylvania’s population increased just 1.6% over that time.

“Residential development has fueled most of the recent growth in county and market values, which have increased roughly 25% since 2002 to $24.4 billion in 2006, a strong $58,703 per capita,” Standard & Poor’s said.

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