Saturday, February 23, 2008

Bankrupt Cities?

While not unprecedented, the possibility of entire cities going bankrupt is an ominous reminder that even government bodies have solvency realities:
Broken street lights will not be quickly fixed, overgrown trees will not be trimmed unless they are unsafe and new development reviews may be delayed.

Those are some impacts of proposed cuts to Vallejo's public works department.

A draft fiscal emergency plan calls for maintaining a bare minimum of municipal services in public works, planning, human resources, economic development and other city divisions.

Released last week, the draft plan may undergo substantial revision before the City Council votes on it Tuesday. A city solvency plan is dependent on police and fire unions agreeing to pay cuts and reductions in minimum staffing levels.

Drastic cuts in city services are required to plug a $6 million general fund shortfall. Top city officials say the city is slated to run out of money by the end of April, and Vallejo may need to file for bankruptcy. All $4 million in general fund reserves have been spent.