City Council Finance Committee Chair Carolee Conklin says the City's is not sinking, financially, "Rochester has had over 50 years of fiscal stability."
According to city officials the allegation that the city is, "close to bankruptcy," is false. Conklin says the city's finances are in better shape than Monroe County's, "if you look at the Moody's rating for the city of Rochester we're one of the few cities in the northeast that has an A+ rating, as opposed to Monroe County, which is almost down to a junk bond rating."
Conklin says the city needs support from the state, not a bailout, "we need to reform state mandates, we need to look at how we fund education, the cities definitely need help from Albany and it's not in the handout, it's in some reform legislation."
Mayor Thomas Richards agrees. He issued a statement saying the City of Rochester is not looking for a hand out from the state, but it does need help. In recent years the city has made painful cuts to the budget, and it's not enough. In his statement, Mayor Richards says, "the budget gaps that are soon to appear in cities across the state are too large to be bridged from within those cities."
Some taxpayers agree, saying the city needs help. Others say the state shouldn't' bear the burden for the city's financial problems.
"Given our situation, given our tax base, given the situation in the city the concentration of poverty, we're just about the limit of taxing the property taxes, and so on, and so forth, so where are we gonna go next," says city resident Rich Wendl. City resident Wendy Rote says it may not be fair, but It may be necessary, "I don't know if it's fair but it seems like it would be the only option." Perinton resident Timm Horvath says the state is the best option, "I think the largest pot you can have supporting people or governments, the better it'll be, so I guess I would be in favor of the state helping out."
According to the article Governor Cuomo will address the financial issues of many upstate cities, including Rochester, in his State of the State address in January.