Standard & Poor’s lowered its underlying rating on Manatee County, Fla., School Board certificates of participation to A-minus from A and assigned the new rating to the board’s Series 2009 COPs.

“The downgrade is based on a trend of deteriorating financial performance and flexibility; projected declines in assessed values, which drives local revenues; and continued funding pressures at the state level,” said Standard & Poor’s analyst John Sugden.

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