ASU Officials Respond to Decreased Bond Ratings

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Alabama State University officials say investments that increased the school's debt, a forensic audit and inquiries from an academic accreditation agency likely factored into Moody's Investors Service downgrading the school's bond ratings.

In a statement, ASU officials said the university's bond rating was downgraded Tuesday from A3 to Baa1. Officials say the school's Series 2005 lease revenue bonds have also been downgraded from Baa1 to Baa2.

Vice President of the school's Business and Finance division, Freddie Gallot, says university officials are confident that investments including construction projects and the enhancement of academic programs will likely contribute to the school's long-term financial standing.

Among other things, ASU officials say the university is planning a special review of all its expenditures to improve its financial health.