The downgrade puts Pennsylvania in the bottom five states in credit rating, with Illinois, Kentucky, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The change means Pennsylvania will pay more to borrow money, which could equate to millions of dollars a year.
S&P’s downgrade puts renewed pressure on the legislature and Governor Tom Wolf to reach a budget deal, and work to fix the structural deficit Pennsylvania has faced.
“We must reach an immediate resolution to the budget and today’s news should be a wake-up call to come together and end this now. If an agreement has not progressed by next week, I will be forced to take further steps to manage this situation,” Wolf said in a release about the downgrade.
“Resolving the state’s fiscal issues through compromise must happen immediately. In reaching a final resolution, the budget must be balanced for this year and next. We need to plan responsibly today for a better tomorrow, understanding the far-reaching importance of the tough decisions that we have to make now,” Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson) and Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman (R-Centre) said in a joint statement.