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OREGON $41.2 MILLION GENERAL OBLIGATION BONDS RATED 'AA' BY FITCH -- FITCH FINANCIAL WIRE --

 NEW YORK, June 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Oregon's $41.2 million general obligation alternate energy project bonds, expected on June 15 through negotiation with a syndicate led by PaineWebber Inc. are rated 'AA'. The $4.9 billion outstanding 'AA' general obligations are affirmed. The credit trend is changed to uncertain from stable. The new issue includes $24,995,000 1993 Series A (Governmental Purpose), due Jan. 1, 1994-2009, and $16,190,000 1993 Series B (Private Activity), due July 1, 1994-2009, with a term maturity in 2013. Both will be callable but details are not yet determined.
 Oregon's rating is based on its low level of tax-supported debt and on economic growth of recent years, which has been reflected in good financial operations. The recession has slowed growth, but Oregon has been less affected than most other states. The state is now facing the financial challenge, mandated by Ballot Measure 5, of providing an additional $1.1 billion for education in the 1993-95 biennium. Relative to the scope of the general fund, about $5.5 billion in 1991-93, the step-up in state educational funding is very large. The governor has submitted alternate budget proposals, one including some tax increases, which essentially cut other expenditure areas to fit the higher level of school funding into projected resources. While other proposals have been made, it now appears that the budget will be balanced within existing revenues, requiring sharply reduced expenditures. The ability of the state to achieve orderly implementation of the reduced governmental scope which will result from the proposed plan, if adopted, will be a major factor in future evaluations.
 Employment continues to grow in Oregon, although at lower rates, and personal income increases are more rapid than in the nation. In the most recent forecast, revenues were revised slightly but projected expenditures are below budget. The general fund is now expected to have a closing balance at June 30, 1993 of $302 million.
 -0- 6/14/93
 /CONTACT: Claire G. Cohen of Fitch, 212-908-0552/


CO: ST: Oregon IN: SU: RTG

PS -- NY065 -- 1626 06/14/93 11:59 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jun 14, 1993
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