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Top analyst says Md. should increase budget cushion

ANNAPOLIS — A top state budget analyst is recommending that Maryland lawmakers increase the state’s budget cushion to better weather financial uncertainty and address credit rating concerns.

Warren Deschenaux gave lawmakers on a Senate committee a briefing Tuesday about Moody’s Investors Service warning last week warned of lowering credit ratings on five states if it downgrades the U.S. government’s credit rating. Maryland was one of the five states.

Maryland is one of eight states to have the top credit rating from all three major rating agencies. It enables the state to borrow money at lower interest rates.

On Monday, the state sold $71 million in retail bonds after a three-day delay due to the uncertainty of the debt limit negotiations in Washington.