ATLANTA -- South Carolina officials said the state logged a record $273.5 million general fund budget surplus in the 1994 fiscal year, contending that this should soon lead Standard & Poor's Corp. to restore the state's AAA rating.

Fiscal 1994, which ended in June 30, was the second year in a row that South Carolina has had a budget surplus, Donald Lovett, senior associate comptroller general, said Tuesday. Given the improvement, Lovett said Standard & Poor's should give "serious consideration" to upgrading the state's general obligation bonds from AA-plus when the state presents its comprehensive annual report at yearend.

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