PLEDGE NOW
Central Falls Goes Broke

Jacki Lyden in for Tom Ashbrook


The Rhode Island city of Central Falls is broke. Its cops and firemen wait to get paid. Is this the future for cities and states around the country?

Michael Long, a retired police sergeant and practicing lawyer asks several pension related questions at Central Falls High School in Central Falls, R.I. Tuesday morning, July 19, 2011. The state appointed receiver running the financially troubled city asked retired police officers and firefighters to accept significant pension cuts to help avoid municipal bankruptcy. (AP)

Michael Long, a retired police sergeant and practicing lawyer asks several pension related questions at Central Falls High School in Central Falls, R.I. Tuesday morning, July 19, 2011. The state appointed receiver running the financially troubled city asked retired police officers and firefighters to accept significant pension cuts to help avoid municipal bankruptcy. (AP)

Central Falls, Rhode Island a proud and historic place whose motto is “city with a bright future” took the rare step this week, for a municipality –- of filing for bankruptcy.

The city hasn’t been paying its pensions for years — and doesn’t plan to do so. The public employees have been told: get a lawyer.

How Central Falls became a city with a troubled future may be an object lesson for may other municipalities around the country who are in dire straits.

This hour On Point: The American community, struggling.

-Jacki Lyden


Guests:

John Hill, staff writer for the Providence Journal.

Marta Martinez, director of communications for Progresso Latino, the only non-profit social services provider in Central Falls.

Billy Folsom, mechanic for the City of Costa Mesa, California. Boardmember of the Costa Mesa City Employees Association.

John Garvey, acting chief of the Central Falls Fire Department.

Robert Flanders, state-appointed receiver for the City of Central Falls

Ryan Holeywell, staff writer for Governing Magazine and author of the blog ‘Fed Watch.’

More:

Central Falls, Rhode Island
View Central Falls, Rhode Island in a larger map

NBC Nightly News did a story on Central Falls, which you can find here.

Central Falls proposing reduction in Police and Fire budget


Central Falls residents concerned about public safety cuts

The Buzz: Central Falls bankruptcy

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
May 25, 2015
New York Times columnist David Brooks explores a history of American moral character in his new book, "The Road to Character." Former US Labor Secretary Frances Perkins (R), is one of the subjects he profiles in his books. (David Burnett / AP)

New York Times columnist David Brooks on finding moral character in a self-preoccupied society.

May 25, 2015
Violinist Regina Carter warms up in the On Point studio on Friday, October 17. (Robin Lubbock / WBUR)

Regina Carter turns her jazz violin down home with her new album “Southern Comfort.”

RECENT
SHOWS
May 22, 2015
The Barden Bellas, the all-female a cappella group at the center of Pitch Perfect 2. (Richard Cartwright/Universal Pictures via AP)

Pitch Perfect 2 is the number one movie in the country, and it’s over the top on a capella.

 
May 22, 2015
Crashed cars with airbags deployed are shown to visitors as part of the display of Toyota Motor Corp.'s safety performance standards at the automaker's exhibition hall in Toyota, central Japan. (Shuji Kajiyama/AP)

ISIS rolls on. A TPP vote. Biggest recall ever – airbags. And Letterman’s last bow. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
A Former Bike Gang Member Explains "The Life"
Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Larry called in from Lawrenceburg, KY and told us he was once a member of the Pagan’s Motorcycle Club, a mid-Atlantic biker gang. He didn’t sugar coat the facts as he explained the draw of the brotherhood and what makes the outlaw motorcycle corner the underworld go round.

More »
Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: May 15, 2015
Friday, May 15, 2015

We cancel a few hours and suddenly all of you get convinced of a global radio conspiracy! Plus, dragon zoos.

More »
1 Comment
 
Caller: ‘It Doesn’t Always Turn Out Okay’
Wednesday, May 13, 2015

One caller shares her own story of an extremely premature birth. Her daughter, born at 22 1/2 weeks in 2012, was taken off life support after seven days.

More »
Comment