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THE BOND BUYER: Chicago Public Schools Contract Has a $1.5 Billion Question Mark

November 05, 2019

Chicago Public Schools proposed an amended fiscal 2020 budget Wednesday to begin absorbing the cost of its up to $1.5 billion, five-year labor deal with teachers after a strike that cost 11 school days. How the district will tackle the new expense over the long term and whether it will set back fiscal progress achieved over the last two years weighs on the minds of market participants. "We still need more detail," said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners LLC. He said investors are still waiting for junk-rated CPS to say how it will fund the deal over the five years.

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