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You Close the Deficit: Adam Lang

It's Our Money is asking various experts and advocates to share some suggestions for how the city should deal with the $31 million deficit it has projected for this fiscal year (and remember, because it's the middle of a fiscal year, the city can't raise taxes). This recommendation comes from Adam Lang, a Republican activist who fights for open and ethical government in Philadelphia.

It will be interesting to see how Mayor Nutter handles the newest $31 million deficit in the city budget. If the City can easily cover the deficit, it will make many wonder why taxes were raised to the levels they were and loans taken out to cover costs (how much of this deficit is from the cost of the short term vendor loan?)

Since taxes can't be raised, and any fat should have been cut and efficiencies implemented before tax increases and pension fund deferrals were made, City Hall is left with one major option: Sell off assets.

How many pieces of unused real estate could be sold off to cover the deficit? How many parking garages and lots? PGW assets? Sure, some people will say it isn't smart to divest of such assets when the market is down, but it isn't like City Hall had any interest in doing it when the market was up.

This could be a great opportunity for the City to return property back to the private market and avoid service cuts at the same time.

Previous deficit closers: Ken Weinstein.