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HARFORD COUNTY (MD) $45.6 MILLION GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS RATED 'AA-' BY FITCH -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --

HARFORD COUNTY (MD) $45.6 MILLION GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS RATED 'AA-'
 BY FITCH -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --
 NEW YORK, Sept. 9 /PRNewswire/ -- Harford County (MD)'s $45.6 million general obligation consolidated public improvement bonds, Series 1992 are rated 'AA-' by Fitch. The bonds are scheduled to sell competitively on Sept. 15. The credit trend is stable.
 Harford County's actions to diversify its economy resulted in strong private sector job growth in the 1980s. The county has been successful in attracting several prominent manufacturing and regional distribution firms, particularly in recent years. Still, a concentration remains in military-related and government employment. However, the U.S. Army's Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), the county's dominant employer, may grow slightly over the next several years as a result of other military base consolidations.
 Favorable geographic location, easy transportation access, relatively low-cost housing, and land availability, among other factors, should result in continued moderate population growth and development. The recession has affected resident employment recently, and the county has performed better financially than many other counties in the state and region.
 Capital needs are substantial, but debt levels should continue to be far below average as the county's population and tax base grow. Strong administrative and financial management and planning provide the basis for managed growth. Unaudited figures show a general fund operating surplus of $2.2 million in the 1992 fiscal year ended on June 30. The unreserved general fund balance, including amounts for subsequent years expenditures, totals $12.7 million or 9.4 percent of revenues. The fiscal 1993 budget is built on conservative assumptions, giving the county financial flexibility to offset additional state aid cuts.
 -0- 9/9/92
 /CONTACT: Stewart Simon of Fitch, 212-908-0508/ CO: ST: Maryland IN: SU: RTG


AH -- NY043 -- 7497 09/09/92 12:20 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 9, 1992
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