Thursday, November 10, 2011

Another Muni BK

So we have another municipal bankruptcy filing, this one in Alabama.  And it's a biggun, with over $5 billion in debt, sure to send some shockwaves through the bond markets (The centerpiece of this solid waste is a series of sewer bonds.).  The one bright spot is that this isn't the result of anything systemic but rather of outright corruption, and that people have actually gone to prison for it (Gee, how did that ever happen?).

What I can't believe in all this is the remark by the receiver, John Young Jr., that the filing is an "utterly irresponsible act".  Excuse me, but allowing the public purse to continue to be eaten away by creditors who were ratcheting up the terms of the settlement would have been utterly irresponsible.  Your job, though, was to keep the creditors in line, and you failed, so if we're talking about "irresponsible"....

The remark I can believe is the one by the JPMorgoth Chase spokescritter, just not in the way she intended.  I bet JPMC wanted to avoid a BK filing; in Chapter 9 its backroom maneuvering and political clout are severely curtailed (Duplicity by JPMC?  I'm shocked, shocked!  Just because I've had two VP-level JPMC counsel lie to my face in multi-million dollar cases....).  Sorry, people, you overplayed your hand and left Jefferson County with no choice.

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