If the state government shuts down on July 1, city services will not be compromised, so long as the impasse doesn’t drag on for months, a Bangor official said Wednesday.
State functions handled by City Hall — such as birth certificates or vehicle registrations — might temporarily halt in a shutdown, but city services won’t likely suffer much, if at all, if a shutdown occurs, City Manager Cathy Conlow said.
The city has a rainy day fund of approximately $10 million — enough to maintain services for about two months, in the unlikely event that a shutdown lasts that long, she said.
Portland, likewise, has no great worries about a shutdown. Like Bangor, city officials there have an undesignated fund balance to cover their costs until the state reimburses them, said Jessica Grondin, city spokesman.
Bangor would run into big problems if a shutdown ran into September, when the city is legally required to commit to a tax rate and finalize its budget. A shorter shutdown might prove an inconvenience if state government computer systems were offline and city workers were unable to file data with the state, City Clerk Lisa Goodwin said.
Conlow will advise the City Council to pass the city’s proposed $97 million budget on Monday as part of preparing for a shutdown. The budget, she said, can be adjusted later on to reflect the revenue the state allocates to the city as part of revenue-sharing, grants and other programs.
Conlow will push the council to temporarily shelve city plans to build a multicultural center until a state budget passes. Capital projects such as a center aren’t absolutely necessary and can wait until city leaders know how much revenue sharing funds the city will receive, she said.
— Additional reporting by Jake Bleiberg