Cobb County Government

Atlanta Braves and Cobb Board of Commissioners lay first bricks at SunTrust Park and bury 2015 Cobb County time capsule

(Marietta, Ga. – Aug. 27, 2015) At the halfway point of construction, the Atlanta Braves and Cobb County Board of Commissioners joined American Builders and honorary masonry Eutis Morris to lay the first bricks at SunTrust Park.

Morris, who also laid bricks at Fulton County stadium and Olympic Stadium (Turner Field), laid the first ceremonial brick, followed by Terry McGuirk, Braves Chairman and CEO, John Schuerholtz, Braves President, Hank Aaron, Freddie Freeman, Bill Rogers, Chairman and CEO of SunTrust Bank, Cobb County Chairman Tim Lee and Cobb County Commissioners Bob Weatherford, Bob Ott, JoAnn Birrell and Lisa Cupid.

Before laying the first brick, Morris placed a fifty-cent piece in the mortar, stating “It’s tradition to put a 50-cent piece under an important building like this,” he said.

Additionally, Chairman Lee, along with the Brumby Elementary Art Contest winner placed contents into the Cobb County Time Capsule that joined an Atlanta Braves time capsule that will be placed in the foundation of the park.

The Cobb County time capsule included:

Cobb Home of the Braves T-shirt Autographed by Cobb Board of Commissioners, Marietta Daily Journal cover announcing Braves’ move to Cobb, Cobb County flag pin, Cobb County 2015 fact sheet, demographics and elected delegation, Cobb County six cities sheet, Cobb’s most famous residents sheet, flash drive containing SunTrust Park Ground Breaking Video, “Big Chicken” landmark ornament, Cobb Travel & Tourism orange sunglasses and Cobb Chamber of Commerce, Cumberland CID and Cobb Galleria & Convention Center pins.

According to McGuirk, 525,000 man hours have been logged from 450 workers on site, and 300 miles of conduit and 26,000 cubic years of concrete have been put in place. More than 775,000 bricks will be laid at the park. Schuerholtz stated that the stadium is ahead of schedule and budget.

Cobb County Issues SunTrust Park Bonds/ $1.6 Million Annual Savings Realized Over Projections

(Marietta, Ga. – Aug. 25, 2015) In a major SunTrust Park project milestone, Cobb County has received final bids on the $368 million bond issuance (The Cobb-Marietta Coliseum Project Series 2014 Bonds). The original 2013 projection of $24 million in annual debt service has come in at $22.4 million, $1.6 million less than 2013 expectations.

The bonds will close on September 9, 2015. According to James Pehrson, CPA, Director/Comptroller, Cobb County Office of Finance and Economic Development, based on current increases in designated revenue sources, combined with the decrease in annual debt service, it is now anticipated that the original 0.33 millage rate required in the County's general fund can be reduced to 0.234 mills, a 0.096 reduction.

“The SunTrust bond issuance is a major benchmark on the road to SunTrust Park Opening Day in April 2017. I’m very proud of how diligently Cobb County staff has worked to keep this landmark project on time and under budget,” said David Hankerson, Cobb County Manager.

Bond Agencies Rate Cobb "AAA" 19th year in a row

(Marietta, Ga. – Aug. 20, 2015) The nation’s top three bond rating agencies, Fitch Ratings, Moody’s and Standard and Poor’s, have reaffirmed Cobb County’s Triple A (AAA) bond rating for the 19th consecutive year.

These are the highest credit ratings available. In addition all three agencies have assigned their Triple A rating to the SunTrust Park bonds to be issued in September of this year.The ratings are the result of the agencies' extensive review of Cobb’s financial operations and creditworthiness - including reviews of its financial management plans, adopted budgets and comprehensive annual financial report.

“This is a testament to sound fiscal management, leadership and a robust local economy,” said Cobb Commission Chairman Tim Lee. “We are proud to be one of only 40 counties nationwide to achieve this status.”

The AAA ratings are achieved through a number of factors including a demonstrated history of sound reserves; a countywide government commitment to low taxes; a stable operations forecast; low general obligation bonds and debt service; an overall strong financial profile; a robust job market and strong local economy and manageable pension projections risk level.

According to James Pehrson, Cobb County Director of Finance and Economic Development, “It is extremely rare for a county to achieve these highly coveted credit ratings for nearly 20 consecutive years. The one constant within Cobb County over this period of time has been the leadership of County Manager David Hankerson. These ratings are reflective of the operations of the entire county beginning with the Board of Commissioners and County Manager, cooperation from the elected officials, agency directors and department managers along with a dedicated staff of employees throughout the entire county."