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Report: Cities spending less

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A new report shows that spending by Wisconsin cities and villages dropped for the first time in more than a decade.

The independent Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance reported Monday that total spending for the state’s largest 238 municipalities decreased 1 percent between 2008 and 2009.

However, during that same time overall debt for the municipalities increased 4.2 percent. That was the largest increase since 2005.

According to the Taxpayers Alliance, cities and villages appear to have turned toward spending cuts and increased borrowing to deal with property tax limits and little growth in state aid.

Spending on public safety services, like police, appear to have been unaffected by the cuts.

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