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Mon October 17, 2011
East Providence determined to stay out of bankruptcy
By FLO JONIC
PROVIDENCE, RI – East Providence Mayor Bruce Rogers says he's determined to keep the city out of bankruptcy but averting receivership may take some drastic actions. The state's acting auditor general, Dennis Hoyle, has rejected the city's deficit reduction plan because it fails to close a $6 million hole on the school side of the ledger.
The state has the authority to appoint a budget overseer, a budget commission or force the city into receivership. But Rogers says that's not going to happen under his watch.
"That's not an option as far as I'm concerned," says Rogers.
Rogers says everything's on the table including layoffs, closing city hall one day a week and raising taxes. The budget assumes a three percent property tax increase. Rogers says he's not open to increasing it further but is not ruling out other revenue enhancing strategies.
"Raising revenue is definitely on the table and is definitely being worked on as we speak. We have been since we took office December 1st, but we know we need to beef that up," says Rogers.
The state has given East Providence until early November to come up with an acceptable deficit reduction plan.
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