Welcome to Stockton, California


A Tale of Two Cities

The attorney general of California recently announced that he will investigate the city of Stockton, California’s finances. The city has recently missed payments on some of its oversized debt. Here is an article from the Associated Press on Stockton’s condition. Stockton Gorged on Debt for Amenities Before Crash

The table below compares Stockton’s current financial condition and that of Goodyear. When asked about increasing spending in Goodyear’s next year budget, new Goodyear city manager Brian Dalke was recently quoted in the local papers saying,”We have $2.5 to $3.5 million available for many things”.

Measure

Stockton, California

Goodyear, Arizona

Type of Government

City Manager

City Manager

Population

292,000

65,000

Debt

$977 million

+$300 million

Debt per Capita

$3,345

$4,615

General Fund Revenues

$163 million

$60 million

Debt to General Fund Ratio

5.99

5

10 year Population Growth

20%

100%

Reason for Added Debt

City center, ball park, arena, development financing

Mall, ball park, development financing, corporate welfare

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One Response

  1. One difference between the two cities is labor contracts. The City of Stockton had generous labor contracts with unions, which represented all employees of the City. The City of Stockton was contractually bound to provide lavish raises and benefits. The City of Goodyear does not have this situation. Just an exception, as employee salaries and benefits make up a significant portion of the general fund.

    I am not claiming this as a defense for the current situation, just pointing out a difference.

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