Harrison, New Jersey, Wins Investment Grade From Moody’s

Harrison, New Jersey, regained its investment-grade rating from Moody’s Investors Service three years after it was cut to junk on debt related to Major League Soccer’s Red Bulls arena.

Moody’s cited the town’s improved financial management and healthier balance sheet in upgrading $24 million in general obligations one step to Baa3 from Ba1.

“The positive outlook reflects our expectation for stable financial operations and final resolution to lingering litigation with Red Bull Park,” Moody’s said in a statement, while warning of the town’s “very heavy debt burden and high fixed costs.”

Harrison lost its investment-grade rating in 2011 after a $200 million soccer stadium for the Red Bulls failed to generate enough revenue to repay debt. The town of 15,000 had bet the soccer stadium would jump-start a neighborhood of shops and condominiums around the arena.

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