BEL AIR, Md. - The vote to raise the nation's debt ceiling certainly came with a lot of fanfare and political back and forth, but back on main street it all seems too inside the beltway.
"I'm not real political. I just care about how it affects each of us but I don't follow it. [Do you understand how it would affect us?] Not exactly," said Baltimore County resident Carol Raynor.
This isn't exactly the easiest topic to understand or to grasp all the details, but there are some local leaders saying that the feds are writing a check that their main streets simply can't cash.
"It all rolls down hill and we're at the bottom of the hill. And so by the time it hits us, it's like a snow ball, it is real big by the time it hits us."
Harford County Executive David Craig is concerned.
Just because the federal government struck a deal, he says that doesn't mean a bond rating can’t be decreased for the states and counties that take a lot of federal money.
With BRAC, Harford is one of those counties and has been placed on a watch list.
If Harford County's bond rating should fall, the government will have to make some tough choices.
"It's like if you went out to buy a car and you had a bad credit rating so your interest rate is higher so the price of the car is higher. So now you have to decide what you are you not going to buy because I can't afford to do that," said Craig.
Harford is staring at possibly paying more to borrow more, but it isn't buying cars, it buys police stations, schools and road projects.
Public projects that could get the ax in tight budget years; cuts that bring a fairly confusing political fight to your main street.
"[Does that bother you?] Yes it does,” said Raynor. “We live in Baltimore County, I work in Harford County...it is definitely gonna trickle. I mean there is no question."
Hoping the fight over a ceiling doesn't knock fragile local economies to the floor.
Harford, Baltimore and Howard counties are all facing this same issue since all three get significant funding from the feds.
Harford County officials say they will meet with a bond council in New York this coming fall and explain they have a diverse economy and revenue hoping to convince bond raters not to lower the county's score.
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