Attention Mayors: A plan to not go bankrupt.

Hear, hear! Ventura’s mayor talks about what really makes a town go under: SPRAWL!

But we already knew that.

Global Public Square

By William Fulton, Special to CNN

Editor’s note: William Fulton is vice president for policy and programs at Smart Growth America, and a former mayor of Ventura, California. The views expressed are his own.

Earlier this month, Global Public Square addressed a critical issue at this moment in American history, as towns and cities nationwide look to bounce back from the recession.

“Why are U.S. cities going bankrupt?” is a question everyone should be asking, but the real answer isn’t necessarily as straightforward as the one Fareed Zakaria suggested. Or perhaps it might be even simpler, depending on how you look at it.

It’s true that pensions are an increasingly visible strain on city budgets. As the former mayor of Ventura – a California city that is not going bankrupt – I can attest that rapidly rising pension costs are a huge problem. But there are other, more fundamental…

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