Monday, March 26, 2007

Act 47: Still a Story

Act 47, the state law that offers a lifeline to Pennsylvania's financially distressed cities, is merely "triage" for a gravely ill Pittsburgh. That's the conclusion of one of a trio of reports released yesterday, assessing the health of Pennsylvania, its biggest cities and its outlying rural areas.

The Brookings Insititution, the Pennyslvania Economy League, and Penn State University issued the caustic reports, according to Bill Toland at the P-G.

More ominous still:

"Very few municipalities that enter Act 47 leave it," [Mark Muro of Brookings] said. Of the 22 cities and communities that have entered Act 47 "distressed status," only five have exited, and none of those is in particularly good shape.

The report offers few or no solutions.

But wait. The Pennsylvania Economy League is part of the Allegheny Conference on Community Development. Where have we heard that before?

From an economic development perspective, Ravenstahl is completely beholden to the imperatives of the Allegheny Conference. Old Pittsburgh. Could Peduto have been effective with the AC still trying to wield so much power? The AC and old-style Pittsburgh business is the issue these days, not the identity of the Mayor.

THIS was the upshot of Mike Madison's brief Withdrawal 2007 coverage over at Pittsblog. What say you, professor? Is this a bunch of backward-thinking, glass-half-empty, unfair criticism of a decent financial strategy?


  1. Thanks for the Bee Gees tip... that is so funny

  2. Yeah, that's not even the best version, IMHO. YouTube search for Bee Gees Night on Broadway, and DON'T pick the 1975 version. The sound quality is worse, but the performance is much better!