Feb 15, 2024 - News

💸 Boston faces dilemma for revenue, services

Illustration of Boston City Hall with lines radiating from it.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

The City of Boston is facing an irreversible decline in revenue that could lead to permanent decreases in funding for education, safety and quality of life, according to a new report on the floundering commercial real estate market.

What's happening: Working with the Center for State Policy Analysis, the Boston Policy Institute, Inc. found that Boston could face a budget gap of up to $1.5 billion over the next five years as highly-taxed office buildings remain empty in the new remote era.

Why it matters: Report author Evan Horowitz describes an economic "doom loop" for the city, in which decreased spending makes Boston less appealing, and then leads to lower property values and even more service cuts.

One solution, or at least deterrent, to the doom loop could be increased aid for Boston from the state.

  • Suburbs that are seeing higher tax collections as remote workers spend more money where they live could help keep Boston from sinking.

Keep reading: Avoiding an economic "doom loop"


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