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October 13th, 2011
12:40 PM ET

Harrisburg city councilman explains why Pennsylvania capital filed for bankruptcy

Pennsylvania's capital, Harrisburg filed for bankruptcy on Wednesday. This was a move that was at odds with the city's mayor, who argued that the filing was illegal, and the state, which had pushed hard to avoid the action. The filing came a day after the City Council voted 4 to 3 to approve it, said Brad Koplinski, one of the members who voted in favor of the measure.

Koplinski introduced both resolutions Tuesday night to pave the way to file for bankruptcy. He said to the New York Times that "This really is our only option out there." Koplinski says if the mayor's rescue plan had been enacted – placing the city into financially distressed status under state law – it would have allowed bondholders and other creditors to be paid off with proceeds of the sale or long-term rental of city assets.

Harrisburg city councilman Koplinski talks to Ali Velshi about how this filing came to fruition.

Filed under: States in Crisis
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