ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) - More than $500,000 owed to the city was wiped off the books by City Council.
Thousands of people owe the city of Albuquerque money for services they never paid for, everything from parking fees to off-duty police work.
The city says they tried, but they can not collect.
"We've spent the past four years trying to collect this debt through all means, including the city attorney's office, certified letters, etc.," said Gilbert Montano, Deputy Chief Administrative Officer. "State statute now requires us to comply, to take it off our books, to maintain an updated financial record."
It was a unanimous decision by City Council to start over with accounts, something they had to do to comply with the statute to wipe of "bad debt" from the books every couple of years.
But some want answers for how those delinquent accounts go there in the first place.
"Not all of it is accountable to bad business practice, but I think a lot of it is," said City Councilor Rey Garduno. "We need to look at this to make sure we're not practicing something again and again."
Those debts aren't being forgiven. The city says they'll contract with an outside agency to collect the debt.
The city attorney's office also says they're implementing new software that should help the city process their books more efficiently and keep tabs on who owes what.
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