BRADENTON, Fla. — The first primary election is still nine months away in Alabama, but Jefferson County’s troubled finances already have emerged as a major issue among some candidates eager to replace Republican Gov. Bob Riley, who will be term-limited out of office next year.

With the county unable to access the bond market as an avenue to help resolve its $3.2 billion sewer debt crisis, two GOP candidates who want Riley’s job have called for Jefferson County to file the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.

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