Press Release|Public Finance

KBRA Affirms BBB Rating with Stable Outlook for Susquehanna Area Regional Airport Authority (SARAA) Airport System Revenue Bonds

6 Oct 2023   |   New York


KBRA affirms the long-term rating of BBB with a Stable Outlook for the Susquehanna Area Regional Airport Authority's (SARAA) Airport System Revenue Bonds.

Key Credit Considerations

The rating was affirmed because of the following key credit considerations:

Credit Positives

  • Experienced management team with demonstrated ability to maintain balanced financial operations.
  • Stable and diversified local economy anchored by the capital of the Commonwealth.
  • Diverse carrier mix with stable O&D base prior to the pandemic.

Credit Challenges

  • Very high debt levels.
  • Significant geographic competition due to proximity to major commercial airports.
  • Vulnerability to airline decisions which may impact airport operations.

Rating Sensitivities

For Upgrade

  • Reduced leverage metrics accommodated by further amortization and limited future borrowing.
  • Significant commercial and industrial development within the Airport’s primary service area leading to a higher base level of demand for air service.
  • Leisure passenger traffic at MDT grows materially, stimulated by Low Cost Carrier (LCC) and Ultra Low Cost Carrier (ULCC) expansion and/or organic growth of leisure demand in the Harrisburg area.

For Downgrade

  • Withdrawal of an air carrier at MDT, including one of the three legacy carriers, which results in a permanent loss of enplanements and associated revenues.
  • Additional indebtedness without commensurate growth in sources of repayment and/or a trend of weakening liquidity.

To access rating and relevant documents, click here.


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