Reading, PA

This is money Reading doesn’t have. But you do.


It’s a fact. 41% of Pennsylvanians live in a municipality that is financially distressed.* What do these communities–and most PA municipalities– have in common?

Four things.

First, the mounting costs of unsustainable public safety employee pensions–the most pressing problem by far.

Second, outdated binding arbitration laws that handcuff municipalities at the negotiating table and push them deeper into debt.

Third, an abundance of tax-exempt properties within their borders that use their service but pay no taxes.

Fourth, an unbalanced school funding formula that leaves some districts flush while others are forced to squeeze more out of the taxpayer.

As a state, we’re failing at basic math. Locked up in these disparities are much-needed road repairs, new police and fire hires, new equipment, higher education standards and lower taxes. It’s time to educate and advocate for taxpayer fairness.
It’s time to Fix the Numbers.

Take action now


  • 66 of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties have at least one municipality with a pension plan under a high level of financial stress.**
  • Under current law, a municipality’s fiscal stability does not have to be considered when new police and fire contracts are awarded through binding arbitration.
  • In Pennsylvania, at least 542 communities have a significant percentage of tax-exempt properties.
  • 473 out of 500 Pennsylvania school districts are operating with insufficient resources.***
*Pennsylvania Economy League of Greater Pittsburgh, April 2015
**Public Employee Retirement Commission, 2012
***PA Costing-Out Study


Fix the Numbers is a bi-partisan outreach campaign of the Pennsylvania Municipal League (PML). The campaign is designed to educate and advocate for the reforms of municipal public safety employee pensions, binding arbitration (Act 111), and education funding, as well as addressing the impact of tax-exempt entities, all part of a larger goal of restoring fiscal health to the state’s municipalities. PML is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that serves 85 direct members who represent 3.4 million citizens of Pennsylvania.  Established in 1900, the PML today represents participating Pennsylvania cities, townships, town, boroughs, and home rule municipalities that all share the League’s municipal policy interests.