CHICAGO - Standard & Poor's has put Indiana's Munster school district on creditwatch negative after it was late on January debt payments on two bond issues.

The move affects first-mortage bonds issued in 2008 and 2011 by the Munster School Building Corp.

The district paid the 2011 bonds seven days late and the 2008 bonds three days late, according to S&P, which has an underlying BBB rating on the debt.

The district was late because the town of Munster did not make its required lease rental payment that was due on Dec. 31,2014, analysts said.

"The placement of the ratings on creditwatch with negative implications reflects our view that there is at least a one-in-two likelihood of a negative rating action within 90 days," analyst Anna Uboytseva said in a press release.

The school board earlier this month voted to lay off 50 staff members to deal with a structural deficit estimated at $8 million, according to local reports. Additional layoffs, including of teachers, may be coming, according to local reports. Board members blamed the state's per-pupil funding formula, reports said.

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