Study: Tacoma, Seattle among the nation’s worst run cities

Jun 20, 2023, 4:45 PM

Tacoma seattle worst run cities...

According to a Wallethub study, Tacoma is one of the worst run cities in America. (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Tacoma and Seattle are among the worst-run cities in the nation, according to WalletHub.

“Income levels, cost of living, health indexes, rates of homelessness, and crime rates are key indicators in how well a city is run,” said Katrina Taylor, a political science professor at Tacoma Community College.

In order to determine the best- and worst-run cities in America, WalletHub compared 149 of the most populated cities across six key categories: Financial stability, education, health, safety, economy, and infrastructure and pollution.

In the study of 149 metro areas, Tacoma ranked No. 141 and Seattle was No. 115.

Source: WalletHub

One aspect WalletHub used was to determine a city’s operating efficiency, or how city officials manage and spend public funds by comparing the quality of services residents receive against the city’s total budget. Tacoma ranked No. 100 when it came to city services. Seattle was ranked a relatively healthy No. 11.

WA most expensive state to buy gas for first time in history

When it came to the financial stability of a city, Tacoma was down around 100, with Seattle earning a relatively strong 25th ranking.

Safety is an area where both cities lagged. Tacoma was ranked 121st out of 149 when it came to crime and safety. Seattle was 83rd.

“Use an Equity Index like Tacoma to understand the community,” Taylor said when asked how local policymakers can reduce racial tensions in a city. “Use a Health Disparities map like the state of WA to determine where to invest so that the most vulnerable communities are getting their fair share of the resources. We can target places to improve using data like this and strategies like the Justice 40 initiative.

The Federal Government has made it a goal that 40% of the overall benefits of certain Federal investments flow to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized, underserved, and overburdened by pollution.

The top five cities were relatively small metropolitan areas: Nampa, Idaho; Lexington-Fayette, Ky.; Nashua, N.H.; and Boise, Idaho. The bottom five are San Francisco, Calif.; Chatanooga, Tenn.; New York, N.Y.; Cleveland, Ohio; and Flint, Mich.

Local News

Image: The outside of Hard Rock Hotel is seen on April 14, 2023 in New York City....

Steve Coogan

Seattle’s Hard Rock Cafe to permanently close Dec. 1

A spokesperson confirmed to KIRO 7 the company is open to having another location in Seattle if the right one can be found.

8 hours ago

unsafe sleep...

Heather Bosch

19 infants died in Snohomish County from 2020-22 due to unsafe sleep

Snohomish county's child death review team found that many were preventable as most died from either suffocation or accidental strangulation.

9 hours ago

san juan 32 hour...

L.B. Gilbert

San Juan County starts 32-hour workweek for government employees

San Juan County is making a move to a 32-hour work week for county employees as they struggle with employee recruitment and retention.

11 hours ago

foo fighters tour...

L.B. Gilbert

Foo Fighters to play first Seattle show since Taylor Hawkins’ death

The Foo Fighters have announced a date for their return to Seattle. This will be their first tour since the death of Taylor Hawkins.

12 hours ago


Ted Buehner

This is why your phone alarm will go off Wednesday morning

A nationwide broadcast of the National Emergency Alert Test will be conducted by FEMA and the Federal Communications Committee (FCC).

12 hours ago

car crashes apartment everett...

Jake Chapman, KIRO 7 News

At least 3 units displaced after car crashes into Everett apartment

McNabb says he knows the family that lives inside the apartment the car crashed into and claims to have heard the crash from his living room.

14 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Swedish Cyberknife...

September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

September is a busy month on the sports calendar and also holds a very special designation: Prostate Cancer Awareness Month.

Ziply Fiber...

Dan Miller

The truth about Gigs, Gs and other internet marketing jargon

If you’re confused by internet technologies and marketing jargon, you’re not alone. Here's how you can make an informed decision.

Education families...

Education that meets the needs of students, families

Washington Virtual Academies (WAVA) is a program of Omak School District that is a full-time online public school for students in grades K-12.

Emergency preparedness...

Emergency planning for the worst-case scenario

What would you do if you woke up in the middle of the night and heard an intruder in your kitchen? West Coast Armory North can help.

Innovative Education...

The Power of an Innovative Education

Parents and students in Washington state have the power to reimagine the K-12 educational experience through Insight School of Washington.

Medicare fraud...

If you’re on Medicare, you can help stop fraud!

Fraud costs Medicare an estimated $60 billion each year and ultimately raises the cost of health care for everyone.

Study: Tacoma, Seattle among the nation’s worst run cities