Monthly Archives: June 2011

Act 47 Coordinator Will Hear Public Comment

Tuesday June 28th @ 5:30-7:30pm

John Harris High School (2451 Market Street)

At this time, the Act 47 Coordinator, Julia Novak, the Novak Consulting Group, will hear public suggestions,comments, & corrections for the revision of the Harrisburg Act 47 Plan.

Send public input in writing to:

Note: Even though public input will be used at the Act 47 Coordinator’s discretion, it is important to for us to publicly record our input and findings. Be sure to send your input off and attend the public meeting! 


Rally for Justice

We understand that a RALLY will be held at NOON on Monday, June 27 outside the Federal Building in Harrisburg

to DEMAND that the Justice Department get involved to stop the State’s trampling of our rights as citizens of Harrisburg by legislating a takeover, all in order to satisfy the demands of Wall Street Bankers and Insurance Companies and their lobbyists. We understand demands will be made for a FULL FEDERAL INVESTIGATION of all parts of this fiasco.


Remember, if the rights of one town or one people to govern themselves can be snuffed out because a command came down from the wealthy and powerful, then the rights of every person can be just as easily written out of existence. No hearings, no charges, no defense allowed. Just entry of judgment and sentencing. Is that what we elect government to do? Tell your family, friends, neighbors and strangers. Everyone who lives here or works here is at risk. Let’s help our neighbors do this and show up!


Public Forum to Review the Act 47 Plan

Debt Watch Harrisburg To Host Forum to Review the Act 47 Plan
Thursday, June 23rd from 6-9pm
On Thursday, June 23, 2011, DWH will put on a forum to review the Act 47 Plan, at the Heinz-Menaker Center from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m.  The facility is at 1824 N. 4th Street in Harrisburg.
We will review the Plan through a Panel of Speakers familiar with issues in our City and region, including the potential impact on our City and Central Pennsylvania.
SO FAR, our review shows the Act 47 Plan seems unable to work as advertised by the Coordinators, who have downplayed the tax increases actually required, the deep cuts in public safety and more.
            THE VALUE OF HOMES, and
                        JOB SECURITY FOR MANY

Act 47 Plan

In an effort to explain the full meaning and far reaching implications of the Act 47 Plan released on Monday, June 13th, DEBT WATCH HARRISBURG will be hosting a Public Forum on the evening of June 23rd at the Heinz Menaker Center from 6-9pm.
There are several important deadlines for everyone to know.
1.    June 24 — proposed deadline to electronically submit your name to the Coordinators  if you want to offer public comment on any part of the Plan at the only public hearing.  Send registration request to:
2.     June 28 – the deadline to submit WRITTEN comments to the Coordinators on any aspect of the Plan, as well as other proposals.
3.     June 285:30pm Public Meeting at John Harris High School auditorium on the Plan.
Initial reviews of the Plan are not good.   Local residents and taxpayers will be hit very hard in the long term.  More to come.
Comments on the Act 47 Plan can be emailed to:

A Rational Recovery Plan

A rational Recovery Plan should be agreed upon and should look something like this:

1. Some increases in fees for public services;

2. Some sale or lease of non-revenue producing assets (like some land holdings, etc);

3. Some real discount or full forgiveness of repayment of the monies paid by Assured Guaranty and Dauphin County on guaranties IN EXCHANGE FOR the forgiveness and waiver of their future obligations, a step which would eliminate any risk of future loses;

4. IF POSSIBLE, refinancing some portion of the Revenue Bond-hybrids to obtain lower rates, but without a back end balloon payment;

5. A firm binding commitment to direct new revenue streams directly to the re-payment of future debt service bills that remain from the Incinerator debt;

6. Some significant dollar contributions to a settlement fund from the professional advisors of many stripes who willingly facilitating the reckless deals on public assets that manufactured this debt;

7. Some discount on the future balance owed to bondholders, by buying out their interests or some similar action;

8. Some streamlining of public services AND/OR the transfer of public services to other capable bodies or organizations AND/OR the merger of services;

9. Some short term tax or fee to close the gap between the dollar value of the relief generated by the steps set forth above and an agreed dollar value of a final settlement or resolution of these claims, again with any revenues therefrom firmly earmarked as restricted funds payable to Incinerator debt.


We remind our public officials that the answer to this debt crisis is not magic. The MERE APPEARANCE of moving forward to a solution will not fix this problem. Selling or leasing our public parking assets is not a solution. Selling or leasing the Incinerator, which will leave behind a huge stranded debt owed by Harrisburg taxpayers, is not a solution. Doing both together is not a solution. Likewise, having the State establish a new Board to make the financial decisions for this City is NOT a solution.

To be responsible stewards of public assets, public officials must recognize those who seek to profit from our misery and spurn them. Such officials must take the long view, do the work and work the numbers with our creditors to make a responsible plan happen. Let facts and reason rule the day, not constant threats and wishful thinking.

You are in a rare historical moment. Recognize it and rise to the occasion. If you cannot, then it’s time to step aside.