Montgomery leaders brace for possible federal sequester - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Montgomery leaders brace for possible federal sequester

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Montgomery Finance Director Lloyd Faulkner studies the effects sequestration could have on the city's bottom line. Montgomery Finance Director Lloyd Faulkner studies the effects sequestration could have on the city's bottom line.
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

There is one person who knows the in's and out's of Montgomery's finances.

You can bet Lloyd Faulkner has already braced himself for the possible sequester.

"It could effect our sales tax, lodging tax, gasoline tax and some other areas," says Faulkner.

Why?

The sequester could force some full time Maxwell and Gunter Air Force base employees to take 20 furlough days.

With less pay, they have less money to spend and fewer sales tax revenues go to city coffers.

"We would have to cut back in some areas. A substantial impact to them would be a noticeable impact to the city of Montgomery."

Faulkner assures there is currently no plan for cuts.

Even then, essential services would not be compromised.

"We absolutely are watching because we have to be prepared that when this happens we have to take action," adds Faulkner.

There is a possibility sequestration could affect even urban development projects. And while the debate continues, one fact remains. Federal dollars are behind many Montgomery neighborhoods.

"Those dollars really impact our community directly," says Montgomery Deputy Mayor, Jeff Downes.

Downes says federal grants make up much of the funding for development in poverty-stricken areas.

Take Heritage View apartment complex near Rosa Parks Avenue in West Montgomery, the YMCA next door and the destruction of a nearby blighted apartment building.

Federal grants made these projects possible which could be cut if sequestration happens.

"Then these programs and efforts like this to redevelop areas of our city will be challenged," adds Downes.

City leaders say the only general fund item federal money supports is the Montgomery transit system.

Officials believe if the program gets cut, the city would be forced to make up the difference or eliminate non-essential routes.

Copyright 2013  WSFA 12 News.  All rights reserved.

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