When the Cheyenne city council said they were considering writing off nearly a quarter-million dollars in debt owed to the city, that number came as a surprise to many.
"247 thousand actually dates back over 11 year period so it's not in a one year period," said Jim Brown, Chairman of City Council Finance Committee.
The city council finance committee has given their recommendation.
"The committee recommended unanimously to go ahead and do that write off," Brown said.
Cheyenne has to extend credit to citizens and most of that comes from a mandate that every address will pay a sanitation fee.
"When you do that, that's extending credit to like 19,000 residences and so there's a chance that we won't collect it all," Brown said
Much of the money couldn't be collected because people move away, leaving no forwarding address, they pass away or just can't pay it.
"The point comes when you can no longer collect it and you pretty well decided that's the way it is, you need to get it off your books," Brown said.
Because of this debt, the mayor and city treasurer are changing some procedures.
"We won't be turning over as much to collection agencies, we'll be trying to take that responsibility upon ourselves," Brown said.
As chairman of the finance committee, Brown believes this is a good start.
"I don't think this will ever get out of hand the way it has and the write-offs, if their are any, I think will start coming to the council every year, instead of waiting multiple years and that's why this number looks so bad," he said.