BRADENTON, Fla. - Moody's Investors Service on Friday continued its negative outlook on Jefferson County, Ala.'s Caa1 general obligation rating despite a recently passed bill essentially curing legal deficiencies surrounding the county's occupational tax.

In mid-May, a local judge ordered that occupational tax collections be held in escrow until the Alabama Supreme Court affirmed or rejected a ruling earlier this year striking down the tax. Since the tax supports about one-third of the general fund, the county recently was forced to lay off about 1,000 employees and severely cut services.

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