Justice Dept. Responds to Harrisburg Call for Investigation

In a letter released yesterday (March 20, 2012), Peter Smith, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, responded to Harrisburg City Council’s request for a federal investigation of the financial dealings related to the financing of the retrofit of the Harrisburg Incinerator, according to City Council member Brad Koplinski.

Koplinski called for the investigation in January after the release of The Harrisburg Authority’s (THA) Forensic Audit. The THA forensic audit of a series of financial transactions is available on the authority’s web site www.hbgauthority.com.

In the letter (see below), Smith acknowledged that the issue was of “great importance to the citizens of Harrisburg.” While he said that it was inappropriate for him to make any specific comments regarding the existence of an ongoing specific investigation, he did state “that the subject matter of it is under review” in his office and has provided the forensic audit to the Securities and Exchange Commission and other federal agencies.

Koplinski said that the letter is encouraging.

“This is encouraging news that the federal government is listening to the citizens of Harrisburg. They want all the answers as to how and why the financing of the Incinerator Project and other financial dealings resulted in our city owing over $300 million for this botched and shaky financial deal. Only federal subpoena power will allow the people to get the complete answers as to what happened,” Koplinski said.

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