Manchester

Bryan Marble via Flickr CC

One of the big three credit rating agencies has downgraded Manchester’s overall bond rating.

Fitch Ratings has lowered Manchester’s rating from AA+ to AA. The agency cites the city’s tax cap, rising pension costs and its deficit that caused the city to raise taxes beyond its cap.

Manchester owes $122 million in general bonds and about $59 million in school facilities revenue bonds. The school bond rating also dipped from AA to AA-. But Fitch kept its rating outlook at ‘stable.’

Last year, ratings agency Moody’s similarly downgraded Manchester’s credit rating.

David Hegarty via Flickr CC

Non-smokers living in Manchester’s public housing are getting a little more breathing room.

A smoking ban goes into effect today for the city’s 1,400 public housing units.

Dick Dunfey, Executive Director of the Manchester Housing and Redevelopment Authority, says it will be a tough transition for some residents. 

We totally recognize how difficult this is going to be for certain smokers, but we do believe it's over-ridden by the health benefits for those who live near and with them. 

Ryan Lessard / NHPR

On Tuesday, Manchester voters will pick nine names from a list of 62 candidates vying to serve on the city’s charter commission. And public education is a central issue.