(PresidentialWire.com)- Chicago’s Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced on Tuesday that her city is struggling financially. The city is looking at a budget shortfall of some $1.2 million for fiscal year 2021, following a rapid increase in violence in the city, riots and destruction, and the disastrous COVID lockdowns.
The mayor said the city had overseen a “catastrophic” economic collapse initiated by the COVID-19 pandemic and worsened by the looting and rioting. Lightfoot said that the damage done to the city during the Black Lives Matter and Antifa riots have cost the city at least $60 million in damage. Beyond that, the impact on tourism to the city of Chicago is expected to be felt over a longer period of time.
Who wants to visit a city plagued with violent crime and riots?
During a press conference, Lightfoot said that Chicago is facing a crisis unlike anything they have ever experience in their lifetimes.
“On top of that colossal shortfall, the city’s financial picture worsened significantly during the past three months because of an economic catastrophe caused by the coronavirus pandemic,” Lightfoot added, before saying that the city’s budget for the rest of this fiscal year is $799 million in the red.
BUDGET WEEK VIRTUAL TOWNHALL: Public Safety with Susan Lee, Deputy Mayor of Public Safety; Deputy Supt. Barbara West, CPD; & Exec. Dir. Annastasia Walker, Office of Public Safety Administration https://t.co/EKs9vhTL5t
— Mayor Lori Lightfoot (@chicagosmayor) September 1, 2020
To solve the issue, Lightfoot said that “all options are on the table” but didn’t provide any specifics. She’s not the only Democratic mayor in the country to oversee significant budget deficits. To be clear, the Chinese coronavirus pandemic has hurt businesses nationally and caused massive budget shortfalls, but many states are in nowhere near as much trouble owing to the fact that the budget wasn’t already being mismanaged by the time the pandemic arrived.
“The reality is that life will be different for the foreseeable future, impacting how services are provided and how departments are structured, and we must adjust to meet that reality,” she said. “Some painful choices will need to be made, including the likely necessity of personnel reductions.”
Lightfoot is also pushing for a federal bailout for her city, and for Illinois in general, but President Trump has already made it clear he isn’t willing to bail out cities who have mismanaged funds for years. What kind of precedent does that set?