Harrisburg took a big step to letting the city raise sales tax and restructure (*shudder*) pension plan payments (assigning a portion of pensions for new employees to *ulp* 401k plans). Plan C is still set to go into effect on September 18, effectively dismantling large portions of city government (including the Court system?). The unions are not too psyched about the pension plans that will be avvailable for new employees, but its hard to see how we can quibble over details with so much on the line. The revised bill HB 1828 now goes back to the House for another vote. they’re still analyzing, but if we can get through that, we’re pretty much there and we can put Plan C back in the drawer.
What is unclear is whether this is just rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. I know that the sales tax increase has some potential, but I also know there is a lot of fat in city government. Maybe we don’t need to eliminate 3000 jobs, but we do need to do something.