Fiscal cliff: Local governments brace for higher project costs - Bring Me The News

Fiscal cliff: Local governments brace for higher project costs


As leaders in Washington huddle Friday with one last shot at pulling the nation back from the fiscal cliff, Finance and Commerce examined one of many of the net effects of it: higher local costs to build roads, bridges and schools.

If the nation tumbles off the cliff, ultimately, local governments likely would be forced to pay higher interest rates to attract investors, the publication reports.

St. Louis Park’s City Controller Brian Swanson told the publication the city isn’t planning new debt issues soon, but when it does, the debt costs will be higher. “Obviously interest rates will increase, and that means our taxpayers pay a little more out of their pockets,” Swanson said.

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Two themes in 2011: Higher property taxes, fewer jobs in local government

Minnesota Public Radio takes a look back at the year and finds two trends in how communities across the state are wrestling with budgets. Property taxes, which have been rising for more than a decade, continue to go up as local governments try to make up for losses in state aid. Many municipalities are also cutting into their own budgets and payrolls to find savings on the other end.