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Poll: How Will City Fill Its Fiscal Hole?

Woonsocket is facing a $10 million deficit with few options to fill the hole. What do you think will ultimately happen?


Woonsocket is facing a $10 million fiscal hole with limited options for filling it. The crisis is so bad that on Monday Mayor Leo Fontaine raised the spectre of bankruptcy.

"I cannot overstate the dire circumstances we face here," Fontaine told the City Council Monday. "Obviously this number is devastating ... Bankruptcy certainly is on the table at this point."

Gov. Lincoln Chafee attended Monday's council meeting, branding Woonsocket as one of the "Big Four" municipalities — joining Providence, Pawtucket and West Warwick — facing the possibility of bankruptcy and state takeover. Central Falls already went that route last year.

The news of the city's fiscal crisis has sparked a round of speculation among residents: Will taxes skyrocket to fill the hole? Will city services and educational offering be slasjed to — or beyond — bare bones. Will the state assume control of city finances?

What do you think will untimately happen in Woonsocket? Vote in our poll and add your ideas, suggestions or complaints in the comments section below.

Mew March 08, 2012 at 11:17 PM
THERE ARE NO WORDS TO EXPRESS THE SITUATION IN THIS CITY, I AM SO ANGRY TO THINK WE HAVE COME TO THIS POINT IN OUR LIVES. I HAVE PAID TAXES ALL OF MY ADULT LIFE IN THIS CITY AS MANY HAVE ALSO DONE, AND THIS IS THE SITUATION WE ARE IN HERE. DISGUSTING!!!!!
Estelle March 11, 2012 at 03:31 AM
Everyone needs to fill city hall enough is enough NO MORE TAXES
give me a break March 11, 2012 at 09:39 AM
i would rather see the state come and take over a get rid of the 2 councils to start. supplement tax bill = more foreclosure. new signs when entering woon. welcome to woonsocket , you must qualify for welfare to live here
rene March 11, 2012 at 11:18 AM
i agree no more taxes my tenants will not like the increase in rent if this happens
Govstench March 11, 2012 at 01:20 PM
This city needs to go through a structured receivership and get their books balanced. Some services will need to be cut, the duplicity in government will need to be consolidated. The key thing that taxpayers have to accept is that it is too expensive to maintain control over services. Services must be consolidated with other municipalities to make them more affordable. The retirees will need to accept cuts in their benefits to bring this together. Perhaps the overall answer is to have the healthcare and pension benefits administered by the state as the local municipalities lack the discipline to properly run them. The problems happening in Woonsocket is shared by many orther municipalities across this state and reforms need to be implemented now. The talking and negotiating time is over. The public unions are also guilty for much of this with their coercive bargaining practices and having laws made to force binding arbitration and perpetual contracts. These tie the hands of local government and the taxpayers end up the losers. Now with the bond rating agencies taking hard looks at what is going on in this state, further downgrades of muncipal bonds and the state bonds will continue. Where the public unions have miscalculated is what the taxpayers is able to pay. When that additional stress is applied to the taxpayer, the bond rating agencies count that against a favorable rating. It comes down to the unions vs. taxpayers - the taxpayers will prevail in the end.

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