About Us

PICA Mission

The mission of the Authority, as stated in its enabling legislation, is as follows:

Policy.–It is hereby declared to be a public policy of the Commonwealth to exercise its retained sovereign powers with regard to taxation, debt issuance and matters of Statewide concern in a manner calculat­ed to foster the fiscal integrity of cities of the first class to assure that these cities provide for the health, safety and welfare of their citizens; pay principal and interest owed on their debt obligations when due; meet financial obligations to their employees, vendors and suppliers; and provide for proper financial planning procedures and budgeting practices.  The inability of a city of the first class to provide essential services to its citizens as a result of a fiscal emergency is hereby determined to affect adversely the health, safety and welfare not only of the citizens of that municipality but also of other citizens in this Commonwealth. 

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PICA Board

Under the PICA Act, the Authority is administered by a governing Board consisting of five voting members and two ex-officio non-voting members. The Governor, the President pro tempore of the Senate, the Minority Leader of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives each appoints one voting member of the Board. Each Board member serves at the pleasure of his or her appointing authority for a two-year term.

The Secretary of the Budget of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Director of Finance of the City of Philadelphia serve as ex-officio members of the Board. The ex-officio members have no voting rights, are not counted for purposes of establishing a quorum and may designate in writing a representative of their respective offices to attend Board meetings on their behalf.

PICA Staff

The PICA Board appoints a staff to execute the functions of the Authority. Currently, the Staff of the Authority is comprised of the following individuals:

Marisa Waxman, AICP

Executive Director

Rob Call

Deputy Director

Suzanne Staherski

Research & Policy Analyst

Deidre Morgenstern

Administrative Manager


The PICA Act

PICA was created in 1991 to assist the City of Philadelphia in overcoming a severe financial crisis. The Authority was created through the joint efforts of concerned Philadelphians and State officials who envisioned a structure which would assist the City in putting its revenue collection and spending processes in order and at the same time reach a consensus on its future priorities, assets and limitations.

The PICA Act was a compromise fashioned to meet the requirements of the Pennsylvania Constitution, the concept of local government Home Rule, and the interests of the State in the preservation of the financial integrity of its municipalities. PICA’s role, a combination of cooperation, assistance and oversight was determined to be of vital importance in both a financial and political sense. PICA was designed to be a catalyst in the City’s re-evaluation of the role and priorities of municipal government. The PICA Act was amended in 2022 to extend PICA's relationship with the City until at least 2047.

The PICA Agreement

The Intergovernmental Cooperation Agreement negotiated by and between PICA and the City and signed in January of 1992 formalized the relationship contemplated by the PICA legislation. The powers and duties of the respective participants envisioned in the legislation were put into place with the execution of the Agreement. After the amendment of the PICA Act in 2022, the Agreement was updated to reflect changes in operations since the initial signing in 1992.