THE U.S. ECONOMIC “recovery” is going to feel more like a recession for some time to come. So said a variety of forecasters after economic growth slowed significantly in the second quarter.
Gov. Haley Barbour questions whether the “recovery” ever moved beyond Wall Street, saying “it has not come to Main Street.”
At a Neshoba County Fair press conference last week, the governor forecast protracted unemployment for thousands of Mississippians, flat consumer spending and tough times for local and state governments.
He also said the oil spill has negatively impacted Mississippi’s economy and July’s improved tax collections are unlikely to be sustained.
A group of mayors meet periodically to discuss issues. At their late July meeting, they complained that not only are tax revenues down, but unfunded costs from higher levels of government are going up. These range from increased retirement and health insurance costs for public employees to mowing state highway rights of ways inside city limits. All this plus state funding cuts for schools put the burden on local governments to raise taxes for things they have no control over.
Bill Crawford is a recovering politician from Meridian. He can be reached at [email protected]