District's financial outlook improves to stable

Continuous improvement for district financial status
Posted on 04/17/2015
This is the image for the news article titled Continuous improvement for district financial statusNote: In the 2012-13 school year, the Nampa School District discovered an unexpected $5.6 million deficit caused by budgeting errors. Since that time the district has erased its deficit, "right sized" its budget, changed leadership, and put in place checks and balances to prevent future mistakes.  Finanical experts are consistently upgrading their ratings and/or outlook of the district based on its progress.

April 28, 2015

Nampa School District's bond rating jumps two spots up  (Click title for full report)

Moody's Ratings of the Nampa School District jumped two spots in April after the national rating agency reviewed the district's financial situation.

Raters said: "
The upgrade of the rating reflects the rapid and significant improvement in the district's financial operations, evidenced by sharply increased reserves and liquidity. The district acted swiftly to eliminate a negative fund balance, implement stronger internal controls and budget a contingency within expenditures to support continued restoration of reserves over the next several years."

Raters revised the district's financial outlook from stable to positive and upgraded its rating from Baa1 from Baa3.


"The positive outlook reflects our expectation that financial operations will continue to improve, reserve levels will gradually increase over the next several fiscal years and that these improved finances will be further supported by the district's strengthened internal controls and sizeable tax base," said the bond rating agency in its report accompanying the upgrade.

January 30, 2015
S&P upgrades bond ratings for Nampa School District

A national bond rating agency upgraded its evaluation of the Nampa School District reflecting the district’s significantly improved financial performance.

On Jan. 30, Standards & Poor’s (S&P) Ratings Service, upgraded the district’s bond rating from “BBB” to “A-“ and changed its assessment of the district’s outlook to stable.

“This rating change is an affirmation of the hard work and sacrifice of a lot of folks and the Board of Trustees during the past two years to restore stability to the district,” Superintendent David Peterson said. “We are continuing to improve and plan for a brighter future.”

In a news release, S&P credit analyst Sarah Sullivant said: “The rating change reflects our view of the district's significantly improved financial performance in fiscal years 2014 and 2015, aided by revenue from voter-approved supplemental tax levies and state funding increases, coupled with budget projections that indicate at least stable performance in fiscal 2015. The stable outlook reflects our expectation that the district will maintain at least balanced operations and adequate reserve levels in the current fiscal year, 2015, and following fiscal years."

The rating agency report also noted an increase in oversight: “We understand the district board and management have critically examined the causes of the recent financial performance and, with the advice of an external auditor, have strengthened the controls and improved processes regarding building annual budgets.

June 18, 2014

Moody’s: District’s financial outlook improves from negative to stable (Click title for full report)

A national bond rating agency upgraded its financial outlook for the Nampa School District from negative to stable and held the district’s bond rating steady.

In June 2014, Moody’s Investor Service issued its opinion after a review of the district’s financial situation.

“The stable rating outlook reflects our expectation that district finances will gradually recover, starting in FY14, as a result of management's corrective actions which are expected to result in an operating surplus and a slightly positive reserve balance for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014, Moody’s said in its announcement.

Moody’s held the district’s bond rating steady at Baa3. During the district’s financial crisis, the agency had downgraded the district’s bond rating.

“We’ve made significant progress toward implementing our plan to restore financial stability, so I am pleased to see the negative outlook change to reflect our improvements,” said Pete Koehler, Superintendent. “Thanks in large part to our community’s support, the district has eliminated its deficit. We also brought spending into line with revenue through difficult cuts. We are stable and during the next three to five years the district should fully recover.”

In August 2012, the district discovered it ended the 2011-12 school year with a deficit. The deficit was the result of budgeting errors and lack of oversight and the individuals responsible left the district. When the deficit was discovered, the district had already committed to contracts in the 2012-13 school year. While the district was able to cut some spending during 2012-13, the deficit grew to $5.3 million by June 30, 2013.

In the 2013-14 school year, the district took major steps to restore financial stability. The deficit was eliminated primarily through revenue from the sale of unused property and a one-time supplemental levy/bond restructure approved in March 2013 as well as spending cuts. The district brought spending into line with revenue by cutting 14 days from the school calendar, leaving teaching positions unfilled, reducing busing service, closing a school, and making other cuts. The district anticipates ending the 2013-14 school year with a small surplus.

For the 2014-15 school year, the administration is proposing a balanced budget that includes continuing to rebuild the district’s fund balance. The 14 days cut from the calendar and 25 teaching positions will be restored thanks to voter approval of a March 2014 supplemental levy, which provides about $3.4 million for the next two years.


Editors & reporters: Here’s a link to Moody’s news release.