LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer ordered a halt to city construction projects in response to the Metro Council’s vote to suspend a bond ordinance that provides funding.
“We have no alternative but to stop the projects because the financial and legal liability we could face if we keep going forward,” Fischer said. “Based on what I’m hearing they realized they made a mistake.”
The stoppage affects bond-funded projects like re-paving streets, constructing sidewalks and the completion of the Northeast Regional Library. The library is scheduled to open this year.
The conflict is part of the city’s ongoing financial crisis. Louisville is facing a 4 year shortfall of $65 million, most of it due to increased state-imposed pension payments.
Mayor Greg Fischer proposed a plan to triple taxes on some insurance policies to avoid making cuts to city services.
On Thursday, the council voted 18-8 to suspend the bond ordinance as members called for re-examination of the funded projects in anticipation of potential cuts.
“What they did was really irresponsible,” Fischer said. “I can understand we can all disagree about revenues and cuts and all that. But let’s talk to each other before you pull a stunt like this.”
District 11 Metro Councilman Kevin Kramer was critical of the Mayor’s decision to halt current construction.
“There is no reason to stop those projects,” Kramer said. “That was just his way of saying don’t mess with me. Which is unfortunate. It’s really unfortunate.”