Wednesday Waste: Leaky Budget

This Wednesday Waste story is the result of a wasteful spending tip provided by Bob Weeks via our Bankrupting America mobile app. Send us your own wasteful spending tips and help us keep government accountable!

Wichita, Kan., is apparently better at conserving water than money. Due to a water shortage, city officials announced a potential shutdown of its $3.5 million WaterWalk Waltzing Waters fountain system. The Wichita Eagle reports that the WaterWalk was part of a $41 million overall development deal, and the price tag doesn’t end at $3.5 million.

“The city’s price tag for the fountain mechanics is $1.6 million, with the remaining $1.9 million to finalize the development.”

Wichita recognized the need to reduce its water usage after projections indicated its main reservoir could dry up by 2015. It has not, however, recognized the need to reduce spending. The city’s debt shot up from $813,493,172 in 2007 to $1,194,640,127 by the end of 2011. Wichita officials only seem to see the value of a budget when they can’t borrow more of a resource. Imagine if they had the option to just borrow all of their H20 from a bank. Of course then they would have to pay back every gallon, with interest.

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