Facts You Should Know: 2012 Fact Sheet / State and Municipal Bankruptcy, Municipal Bonds, and State and Local Pensions

Source: NGA – National Governors Association, NCSL – National Conference of State Legislatures, CSG – The Council of State Governments, NACo – National Association of Counties NLC – National League of Cities, USCM – The U.S. Conference of Mayors, ICMA – International City/County Management Association, NASBO – National Association of State Budget Officers, NASACT – National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers and Treasurers, GFOA – Government Finance Officers Association, NASRA – National Association of State Retirement Administrators, 2012

From the ">summary:
State and local government officials want you to know something: Yes, budgets are tight these days, but their overall financial picture is still solid. That is the message from a new fact sheet, “Facts You Should Know,” released by the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) and 10 other state and local government organizations….

The fact sheet makes the case, citing among other factors:
– Municipal bond defaults are rare. From 1970 through 2011, only five rated city or county governments defaulted. Of the 65 rated municipal bond defaults during this period, most were for not-for-profit hospitals or housing projects. Municipal securities are considered second only to Treasuries in investment safety.
– Most state and local pension systems have assets to weather the economic crisis, with nearly $3 trillion in pension trusts.
– Officials are working to improve their finances. State and local governments “have made changes to benefit levels, contribution rate structures, or both since 2009,” according to the news release.

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