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Moody's upgrades Southampton bond rating

Southampton Town has received a Aa1 rating by Moody's Investors Service after its refinancing of $16.8 million in outstanding bonds, which allowed the municipality to obtain a 1.6 percent rate and save about $1.8 million over the next 10 years.

"This is precisely why we have been working so hard over the past few years to rebuild our reserves, cure old deficits and generally get our books back in order," Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst said in a statement.

After being put on a watchlist by Moody's in 2009, and following years of state audits, the town has been working to lower its debt and fix procedural problems within its financial structure.

Moody's slightly downgraded the town's rating in February 2010 to Aa2 from its previous perch of Aa1.

Moody's noted the town's low debt and affluent tax base in its note on the upgrade.

Moody's Investors Services issues credit ratings to municipalities as an estimation of the issuer's risk of default on its long term debt.

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