CHICAGO, June 24 Standard & Poor's Ratings
Services on Monday assigned an A-minus rating and negative
outlook to Illinois's sale of $1.3 billion of general obligation
bonds scheduled to price on Wednesday.
The rating agency, which downgraded the state to A-minus in
January, reiterated its warning that the rating, already the
lowest among U.S. states, could fall to the triple-B category if
a fix to Illinois' nearly $100 billion unfunded public pension
liability remains elusive. It also said the state must deal with
the scheduled partial expiration of big income tax rate hikes on
Jan. 1, 2015.
Increased revenue from the tax hikes has largely been used
to make the state's annual pension payments.