City Debt Issuance and Bond Rating
The City consciously manages its debt to ensure continued high credit quality, access to credit markets, and financial flexibility. The debt management program is meant to lower overall long-term cost of government for the City of West Allis residents and businesses.
The city follows general policies when deciding to issue debt on an annual basis. The City will issue long term borrowing for capital improvement projects, including streets, storm water, water utility and sanitary sewer, and equipment. The City will not issue debt for current operations. Based on Charter Ordinance Number 19, no general obligation bonds shall be issued by the City for street improvements in a cumulative annual amount in excess of $2,750,000. Any required excess shall be funded on an annual operating basis or be subject to referendum. The preferred debt type is General Obligation Promissory Notes with a term of 10 years or less with a fixed interest rate.
Direct and indirect debt as a percentage of equalized property value will not exceed 3%. Indirect debt includes any general obligation debt issued by the City but not currently funded through the tax levy. This debt is issued through a competitive sale method unless there are compelling reasons which indicate that a negotiated sale or private placement would have a more favorable result.
The City engages two or more bond rating agencies to rate the City debt issue. The most recent debt ratings and Official statements can be found on our Bond Rating page