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Rating Action:

Moody's assigns Aa3 to Lower Township MUA, NJ's $4.8M Refunding Bonds, 2014

31 Jan 2014

Affirms Aa3 on $32.1M parity debt

New York, January 31, 2014 --

Moody's Rating

Issue: Revenue Refunding Bonds, Series 2014; Rating: Aa3; Sale Amount: $4,760,000; Expected Sale Date: 02-12-2014; Rating Description: General Obligation

Opinion

Moody's Investors Service has assigned a Aa3 rating to Lower Township Municipal Utilities Authority, NJ's $4.76 million Revenue Refunding Bonds, Series 2014. The bonds are ultimately secured by Lower Township's General Obligation (GO) unlimited tax pledge. The proceeds of the bonds will be used to refund $4.8 million of previously issued revenue bonds for a net present value savings of approximately $153,600 (3.2% of refunded par). Concurrently, Moody's has affirmed the township's Aa3 GO rating, affecting $32.1 million of direct GO and GO-backed debt.

RATING RATIONALE

The Aa3 reflects township's General Obligation rating, as the township's GO pledge ultimately secures this transaction through a service contract. The rating incorporates the township's large tax base with below average wealth levels and seasonal economy, conservative fiscal management, increased fund balance in fiscal 2013, and manageable debt burden.

STRENGTHS

-Large tax base with seasonal economy

-Conservative financial management practices

-Low debt burden

CHALLENGES

-Revenue raising limitations from statewide 2% levy cap

-Relatively low wealth levels compared to the state average

WHAT COULD MOVE THE RATING UP:

-Significant and sustained improvement to cash and Current Fund reserve levels

-Significant gains in tax base and/or improvement in socioeconomic profile

WHAT COULD MOVE THE RATING DOWN:

-Material decline in reserve levels

-Significant retraction of assessed valuation

RATING METHODOLOGY

The principal methodology used in this rating was US Local Government General Obligation Debt published in January 2014. Please see the Credit Policy page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

For ratings issued on a program, series or category/class of debt, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series or category/class of debt or pursuant to a program for which the ratings are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moody's rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the support provider's credit rating. For provisional ratings, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt, in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would have affected the rating. For further information please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.

Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating review.

Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to the lead rating analyst and to the Moody's legal entity that has issued the rating.

Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating.

David Strungis
Associate Analyst
Public Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service, Inc.
250 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007
U.S.A.
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Dan Seymour
Associate Analyst
Public Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service, Inc.
250 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007
U.S.A.
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Moody's assigns Aa3 to Lower Township MUA, NJ's $4.8M Refunding Bonds, 2014
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