Harrisburg Mayor Linda Thompson and state-appointed receiver William Lynch have announced a tentative deal to sell
the city's trash incinerator.
Thompson and Lynch said Wednesday that all parties involved in the sale have come to a consensus and a final deal with the Lancaster County Solid Waste
Management Authority is imminent.
The incinerator, with approximately $345 million in debt, has long been
the focus of Harrisburg's financial crisis and has had a major impact
on the city's financial wellbeing.
Lynch would not talk numbers, but said the debt attached to the incinerator would be taken care of.
city of Harrisburg will walk away from - and the county - from
incinerator debt which we have referred to in the past as stranded
debt," he said.
Lynch said Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority was
selected as the sole bidder for the incinerator last month after a
stringent screening process with two other companies.
He said the agreed upon solution will involve the sale of the
incinerator, lease of parking assets and several other actions that must
be approved by Commonwealth Court.
Shannon Williams, executive director of the Harrisburg Authority, would not comment on figures but said the authority likes what it has seen so far.
"The Harrisburg Authority is on board with the details that we understand to be a part of this deal," Williams said.
Thompson touted the pending sale as another recent accomplishment made by elected officials and her administration. She said the incinerator deal, a contract agreement with the Fraternal Order of Police, and last week's auction of artifacts has the city "on the road to recovery."
Lynch was far from driving a victory lap, and instead urged caution at every turn.
"There is no intention to fix Harrisburg now and forever," he said. "What we do intend to do is provide the city with the tools that it can use to work its way to a stable, predictable financial future."
Lynch said the deal should be completed and filed before Commonwealth Court for approval in late August. Closing could occur late this year, he said, but negotiations will determine a final timeline.