In a recent credit opinion from Moody’s Investor Services, the company praised the Town by writing Woodbridge “benefits from a stable financial position, supported by reliable property tax revenues, conservative budgeting and low fixed costs. The town’s tax base is somewhat limited, but resident income and wealth levels are very strong. Long-term liabilities are manageable.”
Woodbridge is rated as Aaa stable, the highest rating available.
Moody’s notes the “unprecedented economic slowdown” due to COVID-19 and writes that local governments could “suffer particularly severe impacts”, however Woodbridge’s “moderately-sized $1.7 billion tax base, which is well below the state and national medians for similarly rated credits, will remain stable given its primarily residential nature, strong wealth levels, and stable property values.”
“The Town of Woodbridge is very lucky to benefit from the skills and management of Tony Genovese,” said Matthew Giglietti, chair of the Board of Finance. “Add to that the oversight of the Board of Finance which is made up of experts in their fields, and I am not surprised that we continually receive the highest rating possible, even during a pandemic.”
“Credit for this bit of good news during the pandemic is due to Administrative Officer and Finance Director Tony Genovese and our Board of Finance which benefits from members’ combined decades of fiscal experience,” said First Selectman Beth Heller.
Despite the good news, Heller has been focused on the Town’s “somewhat limited” tax base which is mostly reliant on residential real estate. To that end, she has appointed a 2030 Task Force charged with taking a comprehensive, big picture look at what actions the Town can take to grow and diversify the grand list by the year 2030. The task force will consider ways to become more attractive to new businesses, help current businesses grow and succeed, and diversify local housing stock and more.
Members include Chris Dickerson, who is a local business owner and former member of the Board of Selectmen; current Board of Finance member Susan Jacobs; Rob Klee, current Chairman of the Town Plan and Zoning Commission; Garrett Luciani, who is a vice president at People’s United Bank in Woodbridge and former Woodbridge of Education member; and current Chairman of the Economic Development Commission Jeremy Rosner.