Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Largest Municipal Bankruptcy In United States History

But hey, it's only 4.1 billion. Pfft.

Leaders of Alabama's most populous county on Wednesday voted to declare an estimated $4.1 billion bankruptcy, the largest for a municipality in U.S. history.

Two months after it seemed Jefferson County had struck a deal to settle the debt, the commissioners took the action. It came after spending about six hours over two days meeting with its lawyers to discuss legal options. Those options included a Chapter 9 bankruptcy filing and a settlement with creditors on the county's $3.14 billion sewer debt.

The debt stems from sewer repairs gone disastrously wrong. A few crooked politicians are serving federal time for the shenanigans.


  1. We've become so jaded that billions of dollars don't even rate a front page mention. Yawn. A billion or two is pocket change.

  2. lady red - Jefferson county pretty much _is_ peanuts. No problem.

    Italy is going bust. That's several hundred billion Euro. This is a problem.

  3. Ah, Italy, though we're going bust, to the tune of several or tens of more trillions.

    The tail will catch up to the head eventually. Then the piper will pay.

    I liked the peanut play though, Lewy. But damn, bad year for that crop.

  4. Can't print peanuts. Or Euro, if you are Italy. But we can print dollars. So it's all good.

  5. Oh, don't get me started on mismanagement of public works. That crap is RIFE with problems. Then they try to treat the problem with more laws which cause more problems... And the sewer system is usually the worst.

    Not only do people not want to fund needed upgrades and repairs (can't see it, don't care until it's too late), but the ridiculous regulations make the contracting and labor pool for such work so small that it basically gets farmed out to someone's family member who "assures" that the regulations will be met. Which is a lie, because it's impossible.

    The municipal employees responsible for this should be sentenced to work at the sewage treatment plant for free until their "mistake" is payed off.

  6. The whole "Italy going tits up" thing is too financially horrifying to contemplate. At least I can get my head around the soaring price of Jif, stupid crooks, and stinky sewers.

    The collapse of Europe and the repercussions on my country and my family? Not so much. We're teetering on the brink of something very dark. It's truly frightening.