- Associated Press - Thursday, May 7, 2015

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A University of Illinois financial official says the state’s low credit ratings are dragging down the university’s credit and he wants to have the two separated.

Walter Knorr is the university’s chief financial officer. He said during a financial update at a meeting of university trustees Thursday that he has begun talks with Moody’s Investors Service about “decoupling” the state school’s credit rating from the state government’s rating.

Knorr said “we’re really dragging the anchor with the state of Illinois.”

Knorr said Moody’s gives the university an AA rating with a negative outlook that he believes should be higher. AAA is the highest rating and lowers borrowing costs.

The state’s credit ratings are the lowest among the 50 states and have been hurt by budget and pension shortfalls.

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