Iowa's Government Debt Reaches All-Time High

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By Liz Blood

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa's government debt has reached a new all-time high and is now the equivalent of more than $4,700 per resident, according to a report obtained by the Des Moines Register.

The Register says the state treasurer's office will release a report Monday showing that state agencies, counties, cities, school districts and other public groups have accumulated $14.4 billion in debt.

That's up more than 4 percent from a year ago, and nearly 40 percent over the last five years.

But some state officials say the report isn't necessarily a cause for alarm.

State Treasurer Michael Fitzgerald says borrowing makes sense when providing essential, long-term services, such as water plants and schools. Moody's Investor Services also says Iowa has the nation's 48th-lowest per-capita level of government debt.

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