Also at yesterday’s PUD Commission meeting, it was disclosed that the Fitch Rating Service is upgrading the utility’s standing on several outstanding bonds. Fitch is raising the PUD’s outlook on the Production System Revenue Bonds from “negative” to “stable,” and will continue to give those bonds an “A” rating. In making this announcement, Fitch says that the revision to “stable” reflects the measures taken by PUD management to stabilize financial performance. They also say that the PUD is engaged in “conservative budgeting” in the face of varying hydrological conditions, and they’re projecting only “minimal” rate increases as the BPA hikes wholesale power rates later this fall. PUD officials say that this rating will have benefits for both the utility and its ratepayers, as they’ll get a better interest rate on future bonds, which means lower interest payments and more stable rates over the next 20 years. CFO Trent Martin and Internal Auditor Royce Hagelstein are getting credit for offering advice that was “instrumental” to getting this revised rating.