JeffCo appealing ruling on use of sewer revenues - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

JeffCo appealing ruling on use of sewer revenues

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BIRMINGHAM - AL -

A federal bankruptcy judge says Jefferson County cannot use sewer revenues to pay attorney fees. But the Jefferson County Commission isn't ready to accept that decision.

The county is paying roughly 12 million dollars a year in bankruptcy legal fees. It asked the judge to allow those expenses to come from the sewer revenues.

But Judge Thomas Bennett said no.

Commission President David Carrington says the use of the revenues for legal fees in this bankruptcy is acceptable, so the county is appealing the decision.

Right now, the county is balancing its budget with money from reserves. For that reason, Carrington says a favorable ruling won't bring back jobs or services.

"One of the places it could help- we might be able to look at some capital that's not getting done. We should be spending 10-15 million a year on capital," he said. "It was only four million dollars [this year]."

The president says using sewer revenues to pay attorneys would also prevent the county from dipping into reserves to continue balancing the budget.

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