AUSTIN – Yesterday, Moody’s Investor Services, one of the nation’s three largest credit-rating agencies, downgraded the city of Houston’s general obligation limited tax rating from Aa2 to Aa3, affecting $3 billion in previously issued bonds. The agency cited “weakening economic and financial performance driven by prolonged decreases in oil prices” as well as heightened spending and pension problems. Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Director of the Center for Local Governance James Quintero issued the following statement:

"Moody’s downgrade of Houston is the latest in a series of troubling fiscal incidents that, show how urgently reform is needed. Houston’s booming economy has helped mask the city’s spending and pension problems for a long time. But the city’s big-spending ways can no longer be ignored. It is time that the city got a handle on spending and put its fiscal house in order."

To schedule an interview with Mr. Quintero, please contact Caroline Espinosa at cespinosa@texaspolicy.com or 512-472-2700.

 James Quintero is director of the Center for Local Governance at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.

The Texas Public Policy Foundation is a non-profit, free-market research institute based in Austin, Texas.

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