Florida's housing collapse and large budget deficits could make it harder for the state to borrow money for projects like highways and schools. Bond rating agency Standard & Poor's trimmed the state's financial outlook last week from "stable" to "negative" based on its $13.4-billion in state-backed debt. For borrowing purposes, the state is still rated AAA, but that rating could decline if financial troubles continue. Florida faces a $2.3-billion budget deficit this year, most of that from smaller sales tax collections. If the AAA rating were downgraded, Florida would have to pay higher interest on future debt. On a positive note, S&P said the state's long-term economic prospects are good.
S&P downgrades Florida's financial outlook to 'negative'
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