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WOONSOCKET (RI) GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS LOWERED TO 'BBB+' BY FITCH -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --

 NEW YORK, March 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Woonsocket (R.I.)'s $24.1 million outstanding general obligation bonds are lowered to "BBB+" from "A" by Fitch.
 Long-term credit fundamentals have softened, with poor general fund and enterprise fund performance, and weak economic outlook. General fund expenses have exceeded revenues during each of the last five fiscal years and the water enterprise fund continues to operate at a deficit. Officials are reducing the large negative general fund balance and have petitioned the Public Utility Commission (PUC) for water rate increases to reduce the enterprise's ongoing operating deficits.
 Debt burden is moderate and tax collection rates are good. However, projected reductions in state aid, increasing pension benefit costs, additional bonding needs, and a near-stagnant tax base will continue to pressure thinly balanced budgets. Wealth levels continue to be substantially below those of the state and U.S.
 -0- 3/10/93
 /CONTACT: Ruth M. Levine, 212-908-0605, or Ruth Corson Maynard, 212-908-0596, both of Fitch/


CO: ST: Rhode Island IN: SU: RTG

GK -- NY071 -- 4834 03/10/93 17:00 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 10, 1993
Words:176
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