California City News.org-The State Budget Crisis Task Force released a report that was the culmination of nearly three years of study and analysis. It called for the end of local governments using gimmicks to hide the budgetary issues they are facing. The task force was led by former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, Paul A. Volcker, and former New York Lieutenant Governor, Richard Ravitch.
However, the task force can only recommend the changes to local, state, and federal governments, and hope that their data and analysis will open the public’s eyes as to what is going on. By increasing this public pressure, the report may have the power to make people adopt the change.
Another takeaway from the task force’s extensive analysis was that local governments lack oversight. A law passed in 1975, known as the Tower Amendment, limits the amount of power the federal government has to regulate state and city activities. The Securities and Exchange Commission has the ability to oversee corporate accounting, but due to the Tower Amendment and other restrictions, it is limited in its power to enforce rules in local government.
Co-Chair Ravitch explained that the way cities handle their finances will only lead to more cases like Detroit and San Bernardino. He explained that so much of our way of life is at stake, including “our educational institutions, of our infrastructure, our health care and judicial system, and the safety and security of our homes and streets.”
Read more on the task force and see the full report here.
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