MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Mayor Jim Strickland said a proposed bill to let communities de-annex themselves from Memphis could devastate the city.
The Tennessee House and Senate are looking to let residents hold referendums that could separate them from large cities.
However, Strickland said if every eligible community went that route, Memphis would lose 111,000 residents and $80 million dollars in tax revenue.
That equals 12 percent of the city budget.
"I am very open to talking about a smaller footprint for the city of Memphis, but we have to do it collaboratively and do not need to create a fiscal crisis in the process," Strickland said.
Strickland said the city would not save very much money by serving fewer people, since pensions still have to be paid and resources, such as police, are concentrated in other areas.
In fact, Shelby County might have to increase taxes to provide for those new residents.