I recently read a new article about the city of Stockton, California on the verge of bankruptcy due to their $900 MILLION obligation to CalPERS, their PERS (Public Employees Retirement System). They cannot meet it at all! It's a scary thought when you look across the country and see this happening across the board. Here in Canby, we are anticipating about a $750,000 PERS/benefits impact to the city budget and the school district is looking at about a $2 MILLION impact.
The state legislature has several PERS reform bills in the pipeline where the savings will go directly to the State's school budget. It's been a topic of argument and contention among Republicas & Democrats. I urge you to read about these reform bills that are being proposed.
With budget issues looming like PERS increases coming in the next couple of years, the question must be asked: Can Oregon Municipalities File For Bankruptcy? Technically, no It is against the law. Who knew?
I first learned of the Stockton story on Twitter and tweeted - "Stockton owes $900 Million! Largest city to declare bankruptcy? Is OR going to be 1st State? Paging bold OR leaders! #orleg"
I was quickly informed by a Twitter follower, Oregon Oracle, that we could not go bankrupt and laid out why. Here is their response:
@mayorhodson Why Stockton Can't Happen Here @oregon_oracle wp.me/p3kqSN-48 #orleg #orcot #oprolThe article states that in Stockton, California, a city of 300,000 residents, has become the largest US city ever to enter bankruptcy. That left a lot of Oregonians wondering when Portland, Eugene, Salem or other Beaver State cities might follow suit. Not to mention Southern Oregon counties laying off deputy sheriffs and school districts hemorrhaging teachers every budget cycle.
— Bruce McCain (@BruceMcCain) April 2, 2013