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Cities In Worst Fiscal Shape In 25 Years

From a context free New York Times:

Fiscal Woes Deepening for Cities, Report Says

October 6, 2010

The nation’s cities are in their worst fiscal shape in at least a quarter of a century and have probably not yet hit the bottom of their slide, according to a report released on Wednesday.

The report, by the National League of Cities, found that many cities, which are in their fourth straight year of declining revenues, are only now beginning to see lower property values translate into lower property tax collections, which are the backbone of many city budgets.

And yet we didn’t hear these same cities complaining when their coffers were overflowing from property taxes collected during the twenty-five year long ‘housing bubble.’

It can take several years for city assessors to catch up to real estate market conditions, and this year, for the first time since the housing bubble burst, cities are projecting a 1.8 percent decrease in property tax collections.

Or, to put it another way, cities have continued to tax properties at wildly inflated rates for all the years since they have plummeted.

With sales tax collections still down, and unemployment and stagnant salaries taking a toll on cities that rely on income-tax revenues, cities are seeing their revenues drop even faster than many of them have been able to cut spending.

And was all know how these cities have slashed spending.

They also face the additional burden of paying rising health care and pension costs for their employees

Of course these cities had nothing to do with the outrageous health care and pension plans they are now saddled with.

Cities around the country have made steep cuts to stay afloat, from layoffs of firefighters and police officers to turning off street lights. The report, which surveyed finance officers in 338 cities, found that two-thirds of them were canceling or delaying construction and maintenance projects, a third were laying off workers and a quarter were cutting public safety

Yes, they have to cut firefighters and police officers and turn off street lights. There is simply no other waste to be found in city governments apart from cutting "public safety."

Never mind that the Los Angeles Times reported recently that 199 Los Angeles city and county employees earned more than $250,000 last year. And that several firefighters and police officers are on that list.

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, October 7th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “Cities In Worst Fiscal Shape In 25 Years”

  1. proreason says:

    “Cities In Worst Fiscal Shape In 25 Years”

    How surprising.

    Only the federal government can save us.

    Why, it’s almost like it was all planned.

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