Burbank has not escaped the bumps and bruises of the brutal recession, but yesterday it got some good news from one of the top financial agencies. Standard and Poor’s upgraded Burbank’s credit rating to “AAA,” the highest grade possible.
S&P credited the Media City with a strong local economy, steady tax base, low debt, high reserve balance, and attractive location in the Southland as reasons for the rate hike, according to a press release on the city’s website.
Photo: FLLewis/A Writer’s Groove — East Olive Avenue in Burbank
“The City is pleased that the strength of Burbank’s finances has been recognized at a time when all cities and businesses are struggling with the consequences of a severe recession,” says City Manager Mike Flad in that press release. “Burbank has been more resilient due to the foresight of the current and previous City Councils who have built a strong and diversified economic base and adhered to sound financial policies.”
The higher the bond rating the lower the cost of borrowing for the city, which means “savings of taxpayer dollars,” and that is truly good news for residents.
Nevertheless on other fronts, things are not as glowing for Burbank. At last night’s city council meeting, the list of closed session issues before council members included several legal cases such as, Christopher Lee Dunn vs Burbank Police Department alleging wrongful termination due to discrimination, Omar Rodriguez vs Burbank Police Department, an alleged case of employment discrimination, infliction of emotional distress, and other related causes of action, William Taylor vs City of Burbank, alleged employment discrimination, and Angelo Dahlia vs City of Burbank, a case of alleged civil rights violations.
The entire list of closed session items appeared in Tuesday night’s city council agenda. Clearly, some problems that plagued Burbank in 2009 are not solved, and still deserve serious and transparent attention from city officials.