Standard and Poor's Ratings Services upgrades City's outlook to positive and affirms AA rating



    TORONTO, March 19 /CNW/ - Standard and Poor's Ratings Services has
released a report dated March 19, 2008, confirming the City of Toronto's AA
credit rating with an upgrade from stable to a positive outlook.
    The positive outlook reflects the City's commitment to maintaining fiscal
discipline through prudent management policies. The report states that "the
city's financial flexibility is increasing. Thanks to the planned imposition
of new taxes and increased capital and operating support from senior
governments, Toronto's operating and after capital results are expected to
improve as the increased operating and capital revenues phase-in." The report
also points to the importance of accessing new revenue sources to lessen
municipal reliance on property taxes and provide more flexibility in
budgeting.
    "I am pleased that Standard and Poor's has recognized the improvements in
the City's financial picture," stated Mayor David Miller. "We still have some
work ahead of us, but this is a very positive signal to the residents of
Toronto that we are on the right track."
    "The report also points to the importance of accessing new revenue
sources to lessen municipal reliance on property taxes and provide more
flexibility in budgeting," noted Budget Chief Councillor Shelley Carroll. "The
upgraded rating puts the City on the path to a possible further upgrade which
would have a favourable impact on our borrowing costs."
    City Manager Shirley Hoy commented that "S&P recognizes that the efforts
of the Mayor, Councillors and staff working together to achieve continuous
improvements provide the tools to address the City's fiscal challenges."
    "This credit rating is a positive signal to those investing in the City
that the wide ranging improvements to our financial processes and resources
continue to set the stage for a financially healthy and sustainable City of
Toronto", added Joseph Pennachetti, Toronto's Deputy City Manager and Chief
Financial Officer.

    Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home
to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine
of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America.
In the past three years, Toronto has won more than 70 awards for quality,
innovation and efficiency in delivering public services. Toronto's government
is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

    
                     Visit our website at www.toronto.ca
    




For further information:

For further information: Media contacts: Len Brittain, Director,
Corporate Finance, (416) 392-5380, lbrittai@toronto.ca; Cindy Bromley,
Communications Manager, (416) 392-4993, cbromley@toronto.ca


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