Mayor says Harrisburg could sell city assets by Q3 2013

Thu Dec 20, 2012 3:01pm EST

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Dec 20 (Reuters) - The city of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania's cash-strapped capital, expects to sell its parking garages and other assets by the third quarter of 2013, Mayor Linda Thompson said in the city's 2010 audit, released on Thursday.

The long-awaited audit provides another glimpse into the depth of past financial problems in Harrisburg. The city filed for bankruptcy in October 2011, only to have a judge later throw out its petition.

The city is mired in more than $340 million in debt tied to repairs and upgrades of its incinerator.

To pay down that debt, Harrisburg's state-appointed receiver is trying to sell or lease city-owned parking garages, the incinerator and the wastewater system.

For months, receiver William Lynch has been in final negotiations to sell the incinerator to the Lancaster County Solid Waster Management Authority. In late July, he narrowed to four the list of possible buyers for the parking garages.

With the sale of assets, "We anticipate entering 2014 with the incinerator debt eliminated from the city books," Thompson said in the audit.

The city did not release its 2009 comprehensive annual financial report until July of this year.

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