Local government agencies around the country are having ongoing budget and deficit problems, and officials are now saying that unless Congress steps in they will be forced to cut thousands of jobs. As CNN Money.com explains, many of these jobs include government workers and safety personnel.
Cash-strapped cities and counties have been cutting jobs to cope with massive budget shortfalls -- and that tally could edge up to nearly 500,000 if Congress doesn't step up to help.
Local governments are looking to eliminate 8.6% of their total full-time equivalent positions by 2012, according to a new survey released Tuesday by the National League of Cities, the National Association of Counties and United States Conference of Mayors.
"Local governments across the country are now facing the combined impact of decreased tax revenues, a falloff in state and federal aid and increased demand for social services," the report said. "In this current climate of fiscal distress, local governments are forced to eliminate both jobs and services."
The depth of the recession has pushed cities to make reductions in departments that are typically shielded from cuts because they provide core services to residents, including public safety, public works, public health, social services and parks and recreation.