One of Georgia’s largest city-county governments faces higher costs for borrowing money because its bond rating has been downgraded.

WMAZ-TV reports the rating service Moody’s has lowered its score for Macon-Bibb County from AA2 to A1. That means the consolidated government, previously considered a very low credit risk, is now rated a low credit risk.

Moody’s cited budget deficits that are expected to cut into the local government’s reserves. Macon-Bibb County faces a $4 million budget shortfall this year, and a deficit as high as $10 million next year.

Moody’s said Macon-Bibb County’s rating could improve if its operating performance improves in coming years. But it could also drop again if the consolidated government sinks deeper into debt.

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