Learn about District of Columbia (Washington, DC), including Featured News and The Team.
This is the official investor relations page for the District of Columbia ("the District"). The Office of the Chief Financial Officer (OCFO) handles all of the District's debt financing needs, including its communication with bond investors.
The District was created in 1791 by an act of the United States Congress and Presidential proclamation and has served as the capital of the United States since 1800. Since January 1975, the District has been governed under the District of Columbia Home Rule Act, which gave residents more autonomy over local affairs. Under the Home Rule Act, the District is governed by an elected Mayor and an elected Council.
The executive and legislative powers and duties of the District government are comparable to those held by states, counties and cities throughout the United States. However, Congress reviews all legislation passed by the Council before it can become law and retains authority over the District's budget. With the exception of the payment of debt service on District debt, the District may not obligate or expend funds absent annual Congressional appropriation.
The District is a unique governmental entity, combining state, county, and municipal characteristics. Functions performed by the District government include public safety, police, fire, corrections, consumer and business regulatory affairs, public works (highways, streets and traffic control and sanitation), human services (health, welfare and employment assistance), leisure services (recreation and libraries), economic development (planning, zoning, urban renewal and housing), public education and general administration. The District and its instrumentalities also operate a university, a hospital, a stadium and armory complex, a convention center, a housing finance agency and a lottery.
Read the letter from the CFO to the Mayor and Council Chairman regarding the December 2023 quarterly revenue estimates.
(Washington, DC) - Today, Moody’s Investors Service affirmed the District of Columbia’s Aaa rating. The Moody’s rating reflects “the District's overall financial, economic and governance strength.” According to Moody’s, “The District's high-wage knowledge and services-based economy will continue to expand and is positioned for future growth because employers are attracted to the District’s highly educated workforce. The District has exemplary fiscal governance. The District has among the lowest pension liabilities of any large city and has prefunded its other postretirement benefits (OPEB) liability, which affords it significant financial flexibility.” Moody’s also stated that the “District of Columbia, the nation's capital, is small but wealthy. Its population is smaller than all but two states, but its per capita income is higher than all 50 states and its GDP is greater than 17 states.”
However, despite this affirmation, Moody’s revised the District’s outlook from stable to negative “following the November 10 revision of the government of the United States of America’s outlook to negative from stable.” Moody’s based the District’s revision on its “economic, financial, capital market and governance linkages to the federal government.”
“The affirmation of the Aaa rating is an indication that the District’s finances remain strong,” said Chief Financial Officer Glen Lee. “The change in outlook has no bearing on the District’s fiscal strength and governance but is solely related to the unique relationship between the federal government and the District. I remain confident in the District’s ability to successfully manage its financial responsibilities.”
The negative outlook would likely remain for the next 12 to 18 months.