SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A second major rating agency is downgrading Illinois' credit worthiness.
Moody's Investors Service lowered the state's $27 billion in outstanding bonded indebtedness to A3 from A2. The new rating's three levels above junk status.
Illinois already has the worst credit rating among the states.
Fitch Ratings downgraded Illinois' credit on Monday.
Both firms blame lawmakers' lack of action on a $97 billion shortfall in its public-employee pension systems.
The Legislature adjourned its spring session without adopting a plan to make up the difference over 30 years.
Moody's says its rating "assumes the government will not take action to reduce the state's pension liabilities any time soon."
A credit-rating downgrade means it costs the state millions more to borrow money when it sells future bonds to finance long-term construction projects.
The release of a small amount of a toxic gas led the fire department's hazardous management team to suit up earlier today.
St. Louis city police and fire crews responded to a late morning call to a building at McPherson and Skinker which is in the process of demolition.
Deputy Fire Chief Mike Harris explains how some anhydrous ammonia was released. "There was an old refrigeration unit in the basement and likely there was residual anhydrous and either it was heated with his cutting or just trapped and released," said Harris.
Harris says anhydrous ammonia is lighter than air and in small amounts like this, dissipates quickly. No gas escaped the building. He says every precaution is used on each of these calls. regardless of the extent. All crews worked in Hazmet suits today with two hazardous management vehicles on site.
There were no injuries.
The National Weather Service has increased the number of tornadoes that touched down in the St. Louis are last week to nine.
The largest and most damaging of the twisters was the EF-3 that cut a 32 mile path of destruction through St. Charles County and north St. Louis County.
Another EF-3 tornado his ripped through Roxana, Illinois, doing serious damage to the landfill. Macoupin County was hit by EF-2 and EF-1 twisters, with one severely damaging a high school gym in Gillispie.
Additionally, there were two EF-1 tornadoes in Franklin and Jefferson Counties, and three EF-0 tornadoes in Montgomery County