According to the city's public-information office, Standard & Poor's, Fitch Ratings and Moody's Investors Service have reaffirmed Durham's AAA credit rating -- the best that it can be in the eyes of the three main credit-rating firms.
That vote of confidence means the city can borrow money at the lowest interest rates available, meaning the taxpayers save money when time comes to pay off the bonds that pay for such amenities as resurfaced streets, improved parks and the like.
Fewer than 25 U.S. cities have the top rating. The rating agencies mentioned continued growth in the city's tax base, conservative financial practices, good credit history, handling of the current recession.
The city has about $250 million in bond debt, counting $22.9 million in bonds being issued this year to refinance some earlier obligations at a lower interest rate.