Financial Computers Fail in Bankrupt Alabama County

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) -- Alabama's most populous county already is bankrupt, and now the computers that run its financial software have crashed.
Jefferson County officials say computer problems have slowed or stopped financial transactions in key county departments since Tuesday, preventing both payments and deposits.
The Birmingham News quotes Commissioner Jimmie Stephens as blaming the problem on staff cuts and decisions to save money by reducing spending on maintenance contracts.
The county laid off hundreds of employees and reduced spending last year because of a shortfall in its operating budget. It also filed the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history over some $4 billion in debt linked to its sewer system.
County Manager Tony Petelos says the county's computers are badly outdated.
Interim finance director Travis Hulsey calls the computer failure "devastating."


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