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State auditor adds Massillon to its list of communities in fiscal emergency
The notion of a declared financial emergency dates back to the Cleveland money troubles four decades ago
by WKSU's TIM RUDELL


Reporter
Tim Rudell
 
Kathy Catazaro-Perry, became Massillon's 40th Mayor in January of 2012
Courtesy of Massillon City website
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In The Region:

Massillon is now the 22nd Ohio municipality on the state auditor’s active “fiscal emergency” list.  WKSU’s Tim Rudell reports that the designation came as no surprise for Stark County’s second largest city.

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New Mayor
Massillon Mayor Kathy Catazaro-Perry says she asked the state auditor to look at finances in her town right after she took office in 2012.  She says the previous administration hadn’t dealt with fiscal woes from the recession. The auditor confirmed that the city is facing a two-point-seven million dollar budget deficit. 

New commission
As a “fiscal emergency” jurisdiction, Massillon’s finances will now be guided by a commission -- including the mayor, representatives of the state auditor and appointees chosen from the community by the governor.

New business
Catazaro-Perry says cost cuts will be part of any recovery… but so will finding revenue.  And she says there are positives on that front. “Baker-Hughes is a fracking support company that has located here with about 12-million dollars in infrastructure.  That’s a positive for the city. And Premier, a caulking company, has relocated here and they have a payroll of about 4-million dollars a year, and that’s a positive.”

New beginnings
Since Cleveland’s collapse in 1979, 41 cities and villages have been through “fiscal emergency” status in Ohio … taking an average of about five years to do so. 

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