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Rating Action:

Moody's withdraws programmatic rating on Pennsylvania Act 150 School District Intercept Program in conjunction with release of new methodology

03 Sep 2013

New York, September 03, 2013 -- Moody's has updated the enhanced ratings for 160 issuers and withdrawn enhanced ratings on 38 issuers participating in the Pennsylvania State Act 150 School District Intercept Program in conjunction with the release of the revised methodology, "State Aid Intercept Programs and Financing: Pre and Post Default." At this time, Moody's has also withdrawn the programmatic rating on the Pennsylvania Act 150 School District Intercept Program in accordance with the new methodology. The enhanced rating outlooks of the 160 issuers are no longer under review. The outlooks vary by issuer (see link below.)

SUMMARY RATINGS RATIONALE

The enhanced ratings reflect Moody's assessment of each issuer participating in the Pennsylvania Act 150 School District Intercept Program pursuant to the methodology, "State Aid Intercept Programs and Financings: Pre and Post Default." Credit considerations include availability of funds, timing of state aid payments, state aid trend, strength of notification requirement, and timing between notification and intercept. Additional credit factors include a debt service coverage ratio and the underlying ratings of the individual school districts.

The withdrawal of the Pennsylvania Act 150 School District Intercept Program's A1 rating is based on the new bottom-up rating approach, as published in the revised methodology for post-default state aid intercept programs and financings. The methodology uses the credit quality of the issuer as the basis for ratings enhanced by post-default programs; the former methodology notched down from the rating of the sponsoring state. Since the ratings for post-default programs will be maintained at the issuer or sale level, Moody's will no longer maintain programmatic ratings on the post-default programs in five states, including the Pennsylvania Act 150 School District Intercept Program.

Please click this link to access the List of Affected Credit Ratings. This list identifies each affected sale:

http://www.moodys.com/viewresearchdoc.aspx?docid=PBM_PBM158009

STRENGTHS

* Acceleration of current year's aid

* Process and timing are clearly laid out and will support an intercept of revenues within 2 weeks of notification.

CHALLENGES

* No specified party is required to notify the state of a default

* State has a history of late budgets and deferred aid to schools in times of fiscal stress

OUTLOOK

An issuer's enhanced rating will carry the outlook of the issuer or the state depending on where the enhanced rating is relative to the "state rating cap." School districts with enhanced ratings that are above the cap will carry the outlook of the state; school districts with enhanced ratings at the state cap will carry the "lower" outlook and those with enhanced ratings below the cap will carry the outlook related to their underlying ratings. Currently the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is rated Aa2 with a stable outlook; any downward movement on Pennsylvania's rating will result in downward movement of the enhanced ratings at A1 as they are currently at the cap; please add in that movement of the state outlook will also affect the outlook of the enhanced rating.

WHAT COULD MAKE THE ENHANCED RATING GO UP

-Documentation that strengthens the notification requirements

-Sustained and stable positive state aid trends

-An upgrade of the district's underlying rating

-An upgrade of the state of Pennsylvania's rating

WHAT COULD MAKE THE ENHANCED RATING GO DOWN

-A downgrade of the state of Pennsylvania's rating

-A downgrade of the district's underlying rating

- A reduction in debt service coverage

The principal methodology used in this rating was State Aid Intercept Programs and Financings: Pre and Post Default published in July 2013. Please see the Credit Policy page on www.moodys.com for a copy of this methodology.

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

For ratings issued on a program, series or category/class of debt, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series or category/class of debt or pursuant to a program for which the ratings are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moody's rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the support provider's credit rating. For provisional ratings, this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt, in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would have affected the rating. For further information please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.

Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating review.

Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to the lead rating analyst and to the Moody's legal entity that has issued the rating.

Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating.

Tiphany J Lee
Associate Analyst
Public Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service, Inc.
250 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007
U.S.A.
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Orlie Prince
Vice President - Senior Analyst
Public Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service, Inc.
250 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007
U.S.A.
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Moody's withdraws programmatic rating on Pennsylvania Act 150 School District Intercept Program in conjunction with release of new methodology
No Related Data.
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​​​​
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