A second major bond rating agency has upgraded Nova Scotia’s credit rating. Today, Aug. 14, Dominion Bond Rating Service increased the province’s long-term rating to A from A (low), with a stable outlook. Earlier this month, Moody’s Investors Service also upgraded the province’s long-term rating to A1 from A2, with a stable outlook. “I am pleased that Nova Scotia’s good management and economic outlook is once again being acknowledged,” said Premier Rodney MacDonald. “We remain committed to our fiscal plan. This is the last fiscal year that Nova Scotia’s debt will grow.” In a news release, the rating agency cited a number of factors that have contributed to improved financial results for Nova Scotia including: ongoing fiscal prudence with support from the province’s debt reduction plan applying the $830 million from the Atlantic Accord to the debt debt-to-GDP ratio at its lowest level in over 15 years and this trend is forecast to continue the joint trusteeship agreement with the teachers’ pension, and expected revenue growth due to economic growth, high oil prices and rising federal transfers. Dominion Bond Rating Service noted that, while a close watch on health and education spending pressures will have to be maintained, “the province’s strong commitment to fiscal prudence, as highlighted by the debt retirement plan, and track record of improving its credit profile provide comfort that the medium-term fiscal plan is achievable.” “This is welcome news,” said Finance Minister Michael Baker. “We have been working hard to balance our budgets and be fiscally responsible, and it is good to see our financial performance recognized.” A higher credit rating makes the province’s bonds more attractive to investors and helps lower the overall cost of borrowing. Even with a balanced budget, the province must borrow money to refinance existing Nova Scotia debt.
ATLANTA — A federal lawsuit accuses a pipeline company of failing to tell work crews where a major U.S. pipeline was underground before they ruptured the line, touching off a deadly explosion.The workers were trying to make repairs after the pipeline leaked gasoline in Alabama and was shut down in 2016, threatening U.S. gasoline supplies.The estate of Anthony Willingham, an Alabama worker who died in the blast, this week filed a federal lawsuit against Georgia-based Colonial Pipeline Co. and a partner company.The lawsuit says Willingham and others weren’t given adequate information about the depth and location of the pipeline before they dug into the ground to make repairs. It also says Colonial’s project inspector failed to appear at the site.Colonial didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment Friday.The Associated Press