If you missed it, ReasonTV put out a great video on the city of Harrisburg’s fiscal disaster, asking whether Harrisburg’s nightmare is America’s Future.
Much of what happened in Harrisburg—from owning a baseball team to spending millions on artifacts for a Wild West museum that never happened to the boondoggle of an incinerator—are unique to the capital city. But other cities, like Scranton and Johnstown, may not be far behind.
One trend most commonwealth cities face is declining population. Responding to high taxes, failing schools, growing debt and pension costs, “yellow pages” government and high crime, residents are fleeing cities.
With the exception of Allentown, Pennsylvania’s major cities have all lost population from their peak. Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Altoona, Scranton, and Wilkes-Barre have all lost more than 40 percent of their population. Johnstown has only one-third its population from 1920!
|% Change from Peak||2010 Population||Peak Year||Peak Population||2000 Population||1990 Population|