Monday, April 30, 2012

Harrisburg tries, "NOOO!" to its Creditors

On a day Harrisburg City Council for a time considered confirming the appointment of aka "hiring" a new "Chief Operating Officer" aka Ceasar, Councilor Brad Koplinski made a statement.


Two years ago, City Council passed Resolution 25 of 2010. It stated that if we had to sell assets to solve our fiscal crisis, that there needed to be certain checks on the process to insure that it was transparent. Checks such as a forensic audit of the Harrisburg Authority and a claw back of money from those that made $49 million from the bad deals that were made that got us into this mess, just to mention a couple.

It was a good resolution. One that was honest and some would say one that saw into the future. It must have scared some folks, because they started to make moves that would short circuit this process and make sure that the assets were disposed of in a non-transparent and hasty way.

Last Summer, we had the battle of Act 47, in which the state tried to shove down our throats a bad plan that did not add up and would have left our city with millions of dollars in stranded debt. The majority of this body said no. Four of us said, that we would not allow Wall Street to take advantage of Main Street.

Our strong stance made those working against our city fight even harder. Senator Piccola and the lobbyists for the County and our Creditors talked to their pals in the Governor’s office and the legislature and effectively prohibited us from filed for bankruptcy and then took over the financial dealings of our city. Establishing an office of the receiver that would not only have the ability to sell all of our assets – not just the incinerator and the garages. The ability to sell everything to make sure that Wall Street gets paid in full – instead of negotiating with them and coming to a global solution with shared pain. (Brad Toplinkski, h/t Today's the Day Harrsiburg)

Why is State Senator Jeffery Piccola herein named as somebody who joined in this alleged political "short-circuiting" maneuver to ensure that payments from City taxpayers to bondholders and their bankers be made in full and on time? Why was it successful? How did his and their lobbying relate if in any way to that city's now-resigned appointed Receiver's performances? Did the ability and willingness to credibly threaten bankruptcy make things better or worse for the people of Harrisburg? For the economy?


  1. there is a real easy way to not have to make these statements in the face of aggressive State action - MANAGE YOUR FINANCES BETTER. Everyone likes to complain about what the State and Wall Street are doing to Harrisburg, but lets not forget why they are in this situation in the first place. It is their own doing.

  2. Probably is their own doing, but a complete corruption investigation might be needed to show exactly whose doings were done. At least the former receiver seemed to think so.

  3. Which is of course a separate question from whether or not Harrisburg can actually pay back what it owes regardless. Speaking of the need to "MANAGE YOUR FINANCES BETTER", it wouldn't be the first time in very recent history that Wall Street needed help because it went broke lending money to people who couldn't pay it back.

  4. City leaders, when they are not indulging their own projects, prejudices and prerogatives, love to listen to who they consider to be "the experts". Especially when it comes to finance it seems. Who were Harrsiburg's experts? Who was their Kunka and who has been their PNC?

    Unkovic is begging for someone to figure out how to put him on a stand. If Piccola and Dauphin County are his concern the investigation would have to arrive from a Democratic office. (No I don't fancy there will be a civil case that is not settled over mediation.) Kathleen Kane is a professional and not a politician, it says.