The state is likely to bring a general obligation issue to market in Late September or early October, Treasurer Lucille Maurer said last week.

Ms. Maurer said no decision has been made about the issue's size, but added that recent offerings have been in the $100 million to $120 million range.

Maryland's bonds are rated triple-A by Standard & Poor's Corp., Moody's Investors Service, and Fitch Investors Service.

Ms. Maurer is now back working full time after having surgery earlier in the year to remove a meningioma, a growth that occurs between the skull and the brain in membrane called the meninges.

Employment in Maryland increased in June, marking the fourth consecutive month of growth, the state Department of Economic and Employment Development reported.

But the state's unemployment rate nevertheless rose to 6.9% in June, up from 6.7% in May. The department attributed the rise to "normal seasonal factors," including the entry of student's and summer workers into the labor force.

According to the department, employment levels in June rose above the recessionary totals of June 1990 and June 1991, and even surpassed the prerecession June 1989 level by 12,000 people.

Mark L. Wasserman, the department's secretary, said the increase in employment shows "the economy is improving slowly." But he added that state officials are still seeing contradictory signals in the economy. For example, retail sales are slow, but housing permits and car registrations are well above last year's levels.

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