municipal services

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City That Fired Everyone Doing Just Fine

Outsourcing works out for Maywood, California

(Newser) - Not having any employees hasn’t been so bad for Maywood, Calif. A budget crisis forced the small city to fire literally everyone in June, and it contracted out various essential services to neighboring cities. But Maywood was so bad at handling those services itself that outsourcing has led to...

Colorado Springs Becomes Tea Party Paradise

Cash-strapped government shrinks and shrinks

(Newser) - Just how conservative is Colorado Springs? So conservative that even the Wall Street Journal says it’s “Taking Small Government to the Extreme.” The town is strapped for cash, but voters have rejected a tax increase, urging the government to slash services instead. Letters to the town council...

Once-Profitable Services Are Killing Local Budgets

Utilities, transport, even gambling, are now $3.5B drains

(Newser) - Municipally owned businesses like utilities, public transportation, and betting parlors used to bring in much-needed cash flow, but the recession has done its predictable work. State and local governments nationwide will likely hemorrhage $3.5 billion this year running these concerns which brought in upwards of $120 billion during the...

Cash-Strapped Cities Get Creative With Fees

Governments turning to extra charges to fill budget holes

(Newser) - Cities across America are taking a page from the airlines and charging for things that used to be part of the service, the New York Times reports. "Accident response fees" charging at-fault drivers for the cost of cleaning up crash scenes are catching on, and Washington, DC is considering...

All New York Will Feel Wall Street's Pain

Mayor rolls out plans to hike taxes, cut services and ax 20,000 city jobs

(Newser) - All American cities are facing budget shortfalls because of the recession, but Wall Street's meltdown has decimated New York City's tax base, Michael Bloomberg said yesterday in announcing plans to slash 20,000 city jobs, cut services and raise taxes.  The aim is to reduce an expected $4 billion...

Philly Mayor to Lease Closing Libraries

11 buildings would be run by private or foundation centers

(Newser) - The mayor of Philadelphia has preliminary agreements with private foundations and nonprofits to manage at least five of the 11 libraries the city is closing out of budget concerns, the Inquirer reports. The new institutions, which Michael Nutter said he hopes will become “knowledge centers,” will retain collections...

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