Atlanta Council Faces Tough Financial Decisions
(AJC) — After a two-week recess, the Atlanta City Council returned to work on Monday and was greeted with two unresolved issues, pension reform and 2012 budget passage, both of which hold major implications for the city. Pension reform could give Atlanta financial relief for decades, but at the risk of alienating thousands of city workers who are resistant to changes to their benefits. On the budget side, a potential shortfall could result in massive layoffs. “It is like an old movie serial, where the end of the film dissolves into a cliff-hanger,” Councilman Michael Bond said. “That is where we are now.” The city budget has to be approved by July 1, and Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed also wants pension reform done by that date.