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04-10-2013, 07:18 AM
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Originally Posted by gstommylee View Post
I would have to find it but last time i heard regarding seattle's debt it was something around 45m not sure if its better or worse today.
No offense but if you think Seattle's debt is 45 million, I don't think you'll be able to find out what it really is.

Sacramento (according to debt report in previous link):
Bonds = 733 million
Other debt = 90 million
Unfunded retirement benefits = 950 million
Other future costs = 167 million
Total = 1940 million = 1.94 billion

Seattle 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report
Bonds = 4063 million (p.34)
Other long-term debt except unfunded retirement benefits = 847 million (based on p.34)
Unfunded retirement benefits (pp.120-130)
- SCERS (employees) = 695 million
- Fire pension = 128 million
- Police pension = 108 million
- OPEB: employees = 93 million (2010 number so outdated)
- OPEB: fire = 236 million
- OPEB: police = 252 million
Total = 6422 million = 6.4 billion

Moral of the story: the financial position of a city really doesn't have much to do with the total amount of debt it carries, regardless of how scary those numbers look. Seattle is in a better position than Sacramento because (a) it's wealthier and (b) its managers are more competent (at least that's what Moody's thinks), not because Sacramento is in a 2 billion "hole".

barneyg is offline