Appeals Court Strikes Down Harrisburg Bankruptcy

The U.S. Court of Appeals in Philadelphia has denied the attempt by the Harrisburg City Council to file for bankruptcy on behalf of Pennsylvania’s capital city.  Circuit judges Kent Jordan, Thomas Ambro and Thomas Vanaskie late Tuesday upheld earlier rulings by bankruptcy judges Mary France and Sylvia Rambo that the council’s action violated state law and needed the approval of Mayor Linda Thompson.  City Council attorney Mark Schwartz said he has asked the court to clarify the wordy ruling. “It would have been a lot clearer if they had just said ‘appeal dismissed,'” Schwartz said in an interview.  Thompson, the state, Dauphin County and major creditors filed motions in the Philadelphia court opposing the bankruptcy.

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