City Journal Spring 2014

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Spring 2014
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Steven Malanga
The Man That Bankrupted Harrisburg « Back to Story

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what about randy King as well?
Reed was a misguided martinet who publicly humiliated private citizens whom he disliked for no apparent reason. His friends on the city police force would underhandedly carry out his abuses upon his unsuspecting targets.
A liberal democrat with a rubber stamp liberal democrat council and low information voters who would pull the lever for adolf hitler if hitler had a "d" after his name. Sad. I lived there and will never go back.
No wonder the current mayor opens every meeting with a prayer.
Hello. And Bye.
And they haven't stopped there. The state and city dumped millions of dollars into the same minor league ballpark, claiming people wouldn't come otherwise. They did this at the same time the city finally unloaded the unprofitable team to private owners.
Memories - like the corners of our minds...
There is a reason why city governments shouldn't be in the development business. This is the reason. Money and business sense!

Development is not a simple business by any means, and is especially hard when you consider that the "business" of city government is something else.

City officials are risking public money when they get in the development business. So they really don't care if money is lost. Most development can be very expensive, so when they fail, the loss is large.

The first clue to a bad project is if no private firm wants to touch it, or if they do, requires that the city cover the losses. Then there is the project they KNOW are are going to be losses (for the greater good, is the excuse).

Then there is the corruption factor. Wherever there is large amount of public money being thrown around, there will be scammers, back room deals, and outright stealing.

A city government role in development is to make a it good place to come and develop. Then to get out of the way of those people.
Things could be worse. You omit the mayor's plans to build 17-foot-high hydroelectric dam spanning the Susquehanna, a project cancelled when it became no longer economically feasible. And his proposal to turn Resevoir Park into a tourist water park. And his short-lived wind farm proposal.
So hang the retired Mayor in effigy,and for good measure, torch him. Now, doesn't that make you feel better?
It's no surprise that Mayor Reed was a Democrat, likely supported by the same machinery of corruption, patronage, and plunder of public funds that locks so many US cities in a cycle of failure. The citizens of Harrisburg also cannot escape responsibility for electing the same man to the same office for almost 3 decades. 28 years to build up unwarranted power and foist sham prosperity on a foolishly willing electorate using borrowed money. Sorry to say, this strategy has gone national.
is Harrisburg the PA town that lost three hospitals recently? Or at least were threatened with closure?