Stockton Likely to File Chapter 9 Bankruptcy This Week

I used to work in Stockton, California. It’s a city east of the San Francisco Bay Area in central California. It’s in the San Joaquin Valley, and in recent years grew into a bedroom community for the Bay Area. And therein lies the problem.

When cities grow, planners have a bad tendency to think the growth will continue forever. It didn’t. Add in California’s ridiculous pension scheme and you have a recipe for disaster. It’s likely that Stockton will file Chapter 9 bankruptcy later this week.

And it’s not just Stockton that’s in deep financial trouble. Los Angeles is in very poor financial shape. When I lived in Irvine I paid $36 a quarter for trash pickup; my mother pays $36 a month within Los Angeles. The difference is the generous pay and pensions provided to public employees within the City of Angels. The money to support such pay no longer exists, and the day of reckoning is approaching for municipalities throughout the Bronze Golden State.

Will the Democrats who run the largest cities in California (and the legislature) realize you can’t spend money you don’t have? Based on the last ten years, probably not.

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