BRADENTON, Fla. — Citing fundamental concerns about bankrupt Jefferson County, Ala.'s upcoming $1.7 billion sewer warrant sale, including the risk of political interference, Fitch Ratings assigned preliminary below-investment grade ratings to the deal Tuesday.

The transaction's $500 million of senior revenue warrants received a BB-plus rating from Fitch, a notch below investment grade, while $1.23 billion of new subordinate-lien warrants were rated a notch lower at BB.

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