Why do I believe in getting the government out of the parking garage business? Because governments are chronically unable to do the right thing, something markets are pretty adept at. Today’s exhibit #1, is the quote below from Brian O’Neill’s column on council’s last second pension “fix” (highly recommended reading). Keep in mind, the whole reason for selling the garages is so that we would be able to have a clean way to avoid a state takeover of our pension program (as opposed to the sloppy one that was thrown together last week).
You might ask why city government doesn’t follow the lead of the private sector and move from pensions to 401(k)-style defined-contribution plans for its employees.
Because doing that would take a change in state law. All Pennsylvania cities are creations of the state, subject to statutory codes that dictate pension structures.