The New York City Council looks ready to approve a plan trumpeted by Mayor Rudy Giuliani to securitize an estimated $7 billion in tobacco settlement payments likely coming to the city's coffers. But there are still questions about how ratings agencies would rate the bonds.

That sticking point is one of the council's main issues with the mayor's plan, and one they attempted to have answered in a meeting last week with representatives from Moody's Investors Service and Standard & Poor's.

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