By now we have all heard of Motor City’s tumble into bankruptcy. It hasn’t been a quick downhill slide, but we can generally point to corrupted unions, corrupt city government and shoddily operated industry. We can, contrary to progressive groups mantra, stack the beginning at the feet of liberal fools.
Here’s some comparisons pointing to 19 American cities that are in worse shape than Detroit when it comes to population to city employee numbers.
Detroit declared bankruptcy due in no small part to $3 billion in unfunded public employee pensions owed a sprawling city workforce that kept growing even as the city’s population shriveled, but a Washington Examiner analysis found that 19 major American cities have even bigger ratios of such workers to residents.
The Examiner used the Census Bureau’s 2011 Annual Survey of Public Employment and Payroll to rank every U.S. city with a population of 200,000 or more.
Some of those cities managed to get along fine with comparatively few municipal employees, such as San Diego, which has 9,501 employees for 1.3 million residents, or one for every 137 residents.
But others like San Francisco had a bureaucracy seven times as large, with one of every 28 of the city’s 800,000 residents on the city payroll.
Remarkably, the Census Bureau excluded from these figures all teachers and education professionals, which make up the largest group of local government employees.