City budgets will still be hurting in 2011
The recession is far from over for most cities, according to a report released Wednesday by the Washington-based National League of Cities (NLC). Cities will be less able to meet their fiscal needs in 2011 and beyond, and municipal financial officers report the largest spending cuts and loss of revenue in the 25-year history of NLC’s annual “City Fiscal Conditions” survey.
NLC’s “City Fiscal Conditions in 2010” found that 87 percent of city finance officers report their cities are worse off financially than in 2009. City revenues — as generated in property, sales and income taxes — will decline 3.2 percent in inflation-adjusted dollars, according to the NLC report. City officials compensate for the loss of revenue by cutting spending, and the study found that expenditures declined by 2.3 percent between 2009 and 2010, the largest cutbacks in spending in the history of the survey and the fourth year in a row that revenue declined.
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