Michael Cooper reports on the bleak outlook found in the study commissioned by the Conference, "It will take at least five years for the 80 hardest-hit areas to recover the jobs they lost."
The report comes as the country's mayors -- Democrat and Republican -- grow increasingly frustrated that the Federal Government, rather than providing cities with tools to improve their economies, have in fact cut many of the programs that cities have come to rely on to fund operations and improvements.
"Not only has Congress failed to overcome partisan gridlock to agree on a way to created much-needed jobs by spending more money on infrastructure, mayors said, but even the small sources of federal support that cities rely on - whether the Community Development Block Grants that were devised by Republican administrations in the 1970s or more recent federal programs that help struggling cities pay for more police officers or firefighters - are being scaled back as Washington has made cutting the deficit a priority."
"We're looking for a partnership with the Congress to put America back to work," Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa of Los Angeles, a Democrat who is the president of the mayors' group, said in an interview. "We're looking for the Congress to do its job. If we were to grade the 112th Congress, I think you'd have to say the midterm report card grade would be very clear: an F for failure."