GBC urges sharing of region's revenue, costs Baltimore rates high in magazine survey

January 24, 1991|By Maria Mallory

Less than a year after Maryland's state management was judged best in the nation by the editors of Financial World magazine, Baltimore's fiscal managers also are making the grade.

Baltimore earned a B+ overall grade for management acumen and financial stability in Financial World's soon-to-be-released "State of the Cities" survey.

Using the data from a 12-page survey circulated among the financial managers of the nation's 30 most populous cities, the magazine assigned individual grades for each city's prowess in accounting, budgeting, infrastructure controls and performance evaluations. Those grades were then averaged, and the cities were ranked by overall grade point average, or GPA.

Baltimore's 3.566 GPA gained it the sixth spot in the magazine's ranking. Only three other cities earned the B+ rating, the survey's second-highest grade.

The magazine's "report card" also catalogs the percentage each city budgeted for its largest community services. Baltimore garnered special attention for the portion of revenues the city earmarks for education.

"Almost 40 percent of Baltimore's budget goes to schools; most cities are not directly responsible for funding schools," notes the article, which will appear in Financial World's Jan. 30 issue.

The city also received strong marks for financial strength, including its recently maintained A1 bond rating by Moody's Investors Service.

The impressive standing of the state -- and now Baltimore -- is no coincidence, said Douglas McIntyre, president of the biweekly business publication.

Maryland's clinching of the top spot in last April's "State of the State" roundup helped Baltimore, he said.

"A very, very large amount of the revenues and funding in Baltimore is supplied by the state, so Baltimore's umbilical cord to the state of Maryland is much much bigger" than that joining many other U.S. cities to their respective states, Mr. McIntyre said. "It's easy to run a city well when the state is run well because [the finances] are often intertwined."

City rankings

City.. .. .. .. ..GPA.. .. .. .. Grade

Phoenix .. .. .. ..3.850.. .. .. .. .. A-

Seattle.. .. .. .. 3.850.. .. .. .. .. A-

Portland.. .. .. . 3.850.. .. .. .. .. A-

San Jose.. .. .. . 3.775.. .. .. .. .. A-

Fort Worth.. .. .. 3.600.. .. .. .. .. B+

Baltimore.. .. .. 3.566.. .. .. .. .. B+

Dallas.. .. .. .. 3.425.. .. .. .. .. B+

Oklahoma City.. .. 3.425.. .. .. .. .. B+

San Diego.. .. .. 3.275.. .. .. .. .. B

Milwaukee.. .. .. 3.275.. .. .. .. .. B

Boston.. .. .. .. 3.050.. .. .. .. .. B

Cleveland.. .. .. 3.050.. .. .. .. .. B

San Antonio.. .. . 3.025.. .. .. .. .. B

San Francisco.. .. 3.025.. .. .. .. .. B

Columbus.. .. .. . 3.025.. .. .. .. .. B

Austin.. .. .. .. 3.025.. .. .. .. .. B

Indianapolis.. .. 2.975.. .. .. .. .. B

Chicago.. .. .. .. 2.950.. .. .. .. .. B

Memphis.. .. .. .. 2.950.. .. .. .. .. B

Los Angeles.. .. . 2.700.. .. .. .. . B-

Houston.. .. .. .. 2.700.. .. .. .. . B-

Nashville.. .. .. 2.700.. .. .. .. . B-

New York.. .. .. . 2.625.. .. .. .. . C+

Denver.. .. .. .. 2.625.. .. .. .. . C+

Jacksonville.. .. 2.600.. .. .. .. . C+

New Orleans.. .. . 1.775.. .. .. .. . C-

Washington DC.. .. 1.700.. .. .. .. . C-

El Paso.. .. .. .. 1.375.. .. .. .. . D+

Philadelphia.. .. 1.350.. .. .. .. . D+

Detroit.. .. .. .. 1.200.. .. .. .. . D

SOURCE: Financial World

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