Hello friends & neighbors,
I hope your week has been a good one!
I want to thank those of you who attended the grand opening of the Rainforest at the Arboretum at Constitution Park last weekend. District 4 now has a beautiful oasis to visit with the family or alone for some quiet time with nature. If you haven't yet visited the Rainforest attraction I encourage you to do so, it's truly magnificent!
I also want to remind you that there is a District 4 meeting this Monday, August 15, 2016 at 7:00pm at Constitution Park. We will have several important presentations for you that will include information about the City budget, new technology and the Infrastructure Surtax Referendum that we will see on the November ballot. I encourage you to attend.
Remember if there is anything you would like to ask or comment about please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a fun & safe weekend,
What's Happening in Deerfield Beach?
District 4 Meeting
Commissioner Bill Ganz invites all District 4 residents to a District Meeting Monday, August 15, 2016 at 7:00pm at Constitution Park, 2841 W. Hillsboro Boulevard, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442.
For further information please contact the City Manager's Office at 954-480-4263 or visit www.Deerfield-Beach.com.
FDOT to hold Open House Kick-off for Broward Mobility Project
The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) will hold an informational Open House Kick-off event for the Broward Mobility Construction project on Wednesday, August 24, 2016 from 5PM to 7PM inside Commission Chambers at City Hall located at 150 NE Second Avenue, Deerfield Beach.
This meeting is aimed at answering any questions or concerns about the construction for the Broward Mobility Project, which will take place from September 6th to early November along Southwest 10th Street, from Natura Boulevard to Dixie Highway. The project includes the modification of curb ramps at the crosswalks, the repaving of the streets and the addition of 2 new bike lanes.
For more information contact the Public Information Officer for FDOT:
Public Information Officer
FDOT Broward Construction
The Corradino Group
ATTENTION: Fitch Upgrades Credit Rating for Deerfield Beach
Fitch Ratings has announced that the overall Ratings Outlook for the City of Deerfield Beach is stable and has therefore, upgraded the Credit Rating to AA- from A- for the $17.2 million covenant to budget and appropriate (CB&A) bonds, and to AA from A for the $12.6 million general obligation (GO) bonds.
"A two-notch credit rating improvement is highly unusual. This is a well-deserved upgrade," said Sylvia Dunlap, Senior Vice President of Dunlap and Associates.
Fitch noted many key drivers for the ratings upgrade including:
- An improvement in credit quality due to the City's improved financial flexibility, strict reserve policies, revenue growth due to higher taxable values and property rate increases.
- It was noted that City's tough but "prudent efforts to reduce spending" was a key driver in the ratings upgrade.
- There has been steady growth in the tax base in recent years and that is expected to continue with numerous residential, commercial and light industrial projects planned and underway.
- The City's historical general fund revenue growth has exceeded national GDP due to a combination of tax base gains, policy action by the City to increase property taxes.
- In response to declining property taxes City Management pursued other means to diversify its revenue base, it implemented a 10-percent public utility tax in fiscal 2012, which resulted in an additional $7 million in annual revenues.
- In order to manage rising costs during the recession, the City reduced its work force, froze hiring, reduced wages and outsourced certain city operations.
- The City closed its pension plans and now offers a defined contribution plan to employees.
"This is a humbling affirmation of the hard work of our City Commission and staff. We truly worked hard to get a steady handle on our City's finances. We made many difficult and unpopular decisions, during a very tumultuous time. But we had a plan and we knew that it was the right plan. Fitch has reaffirmed that strategy and we are excited about where we are economically as a City. This is all I ever hoped to do for our residents. This is a good day for our City," said Commissioner Bill Ganz.
Fitch Ratings also indicated that the city maintains healthy expenditure flexibility with moderate carrying costs. In order to control costs, the City Manager moved the organization towards a hybrid business model for its operations, utilizing both in-house and contractual resources. The city merged its police and fire operations with the Broward County Sheriff's Office and outsourced its building department and park maintenance operations, as a proactive measure to manage costs in the event of a future downturn.
"The merger with BSO enabled the city to control long-term liability expenses by closing the Fire Fighter's Pension Fund and removing those employees from the City's healthcare plan and future retiree healthcare plan costs," explained City Manager Burgess Hanson.
The City Commission and management team worked steadily since 2010 to increase efficiency and effectiveness in every single department, which entailed the streamlining of expenditures. Chief Financial Officer, Hugh Dunkley made it his mission to create new processes that would right-size the City's fiscal profile. The City also made the budget reporting easier to understand and more transparent to the public. In June of 2014 Deerfield Beach finally saw some of that hard work pay off, when Standard & Poor's Ratings Services upgraded the City's credit for its senior-most, tax-backed debt from A+ to AA- with a stable outlook. As for the AA rating from Fitch, this is the highest credit rating that the City has received in nearly a decade.
Commissioner Joe Miller expressed, "We made really tough choices that deeply impacted us all. I am ecstatic over this news and blessed to see just how years of hard work has paid off."
City Manager, Burgess Hanson recalls many late nights, "It's been a long road, but I was always confident that if we just got back to the basics we could right the ship. We've overcome massive deficit, so to be able to celebrate a surplus and be acknowledged by experts like Fitch is a wonderful thing. Our entire workforce needs to be commended for their sacrifices and dedication to our citizenry. This is great news, but there is still much more work to do be done."