JERSEY CITY, NJ - Mayor Steven M. Fulop said the proactive steps taken to aggressively address unprecedented financial hardships amid the current health and economic crisis are being cited by Moody’s credit rating as reason for a “stable” rating. The announcement comes as many other cities are seeing credit downgrades and negative reviews as they come to grips with crippling budgetary burdens compounded by the COVID-19 crisis.
In the “All U.S. Public Finance Sector Outlooks Are Now Negative,” report issued Friday, Moody’s acknowledged Jersey City’s material economic and financial impact as well as its proximity to the United States’ pandemic epicenter, New York City. Despite these odds, Moody’s said, “the city government is taking strong action to address both the public health needs of the city and the budgetary implications thereof. The city also has extensive plans to address the substantial expected losses of revenue.”
“While we’ve seen mostly upgrades under this Administration, we consider this year’s stable rating a testament to all the hard work over the past two months to minimize financial hardships for our taxpayers already inundated amid the pandemic,” Fulop said. “We were one of the first to confront our projected budget impacts, estimated at $70 million, with preemptive steps to help close the gap including employee buyouts, hiring, and salary freezes, among other cost savings.”