Pa. takeover of Harrisburg appears imminent

    The Pennsylvania House reconvenes Monday after its summer recess, and one priority is a bill that would allow a state takeover of Harrisburg.

    House lawmakers are ironing out wrinkles in the plan.

    The takeover appears to be imminent as lawmakers gather to discuss the details.

    Because of concerns that the bill could be unconstitutional, Republican Rep. Glen Grell of Cumberland County is proposing an amendment he said would address that worry.

    “The fear was that the constitution says that the state cannot appoint a board or commission to do what elected officials are supposed to do and this doesn’t do that,” he said. “It actually has the recovery plan being implemented through the governor’s office.”

    The bill would cost an estimated $500,000, and the takeover process could take years. Grell says his proposed changes probably won’t drive the cost up.

    Harrisburg’s City Council has twice rejected recovery plans based on suggestions by state advisers.

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