18. "EIU Democracy Index 2014 green and red" by
Boudagga2014 - Own work based on eiu.com. Licensed
under CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons -
22. Economic freedom is the key to greater opportunity and an improved
quality of life. It’s the freedom to choose how to produce, sell, and use
your own resources, while respecting others’ rights to do the
same. While a simple concept, economic freedom is an engine that
drives prosperity in the world and is the difference between why some
societies thrive while others do not.
25. The Size of Government component is the average of four variables: government consumption as a percent of total consumption,
transfers and subsidies as a percent of GDP, the government's investment activities as a percent of the country's total level of
investment, and a measure of taxation
29. Local government in Pennsylvania is government below the state level in Pennsylvania.
There are five types of local governments listed in the Pennsylvania Constitution; county,
township, borough, city, and school district. All of Pennsylvania is included in one of the
state's 67 counties and each county is then divided into some of the state's 2,562
municipalities. There are no independent cities or unincorporated territory within
Pennsylvania. Local municipalities are either governed by statutes enacted by the
Pennsylvania Legislature and administered through the Pennsylvania Code, by a home
rule charter, forming a home rule municipality, or by an optional form of government
adopted by the municipality with consent of the Legislature.
Each municipality, except boroughs, are then classified according to their population. The
General Assembly sets the population threshold for each local government unit. There are
currently nine classifications for counties, four classes of cities, two classes of townships,
and five classes of school districts.
Finally, villages and census-designated places are a part of the local community. Although
they are not recognized local governments, they often refer to specific areas of township or
other municipality and are often more familiar to people than the incorporated municipality.
This can cause confusion to people who live outside the area and are not familiar with the
local municipal structure.
30. Pennsylvania is divided into 67 counties, and all of them are governed by a
county council, except Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania and the six home-rule
counties Allegheny, Delaware, Erie, Lackawanna, Lehigh, and Northampton.
The county council typically serves as both the legislative and executive body.
The council of counties smaller than second-class consist of three elected
members called commissioners, and by law, two must be of a majority party and
the third must be of a minority party, which is determined by which candidates
receive the most votes in a commissioners' election, as two candidates from each
party run in the general election. One of these members serves as the chair.
In addition to the elected commissioners, many of the counties have elected row
officers independent of the county council. These offices include sheriff, district
attorney, prothonotary, clerk of the courts, registrar of wills, recorder of deeds,
and two jury commissioners. Smaller counties may combine the functions of the
Counties are further classified by population. Each classification has its own code
set up by the General Assembly to administer county functions.
31. There are a total of 56 incorporated cities in Pennsylvania, the smallest being
Parker, Armstrong County, with a population of 840 (2010 census). Each of these
cities is further classified according to population. There is one first class city,
Philadelphia, which has more than 1 million residents. There is also only one
second class city, with a population between 250,000 and 1 million (Pittsburgh). A
city with between 80,000 and 250,000 inhabitants that has also adopted a certain
ordinance can be classified as a second class A city; only Scranton has done so.
Finally, any city below 250,000 people that has not adopted the second class
ordinance is a third class city. First and second class cities have a strong mayor and
home rule charters. The mayor has broad power to appoint and remove certain
commissioners and department heads. A majority of the city's functions are
independent of the state's control.
Third class cities can be governed three ways. The third class city codes
establishes a commission form of government. Under this form, the mayor and four
other members constitute the commission which is the governing body of the city.
The mayor is one of the members of council and acts as president. Each council
member is in charge of one of the five major departments. The city controller and
treasurer are elected independently. A total of 20 cities employ this form.
32. . The mayor-council form has a five, seven, or nine-member council, elected at
large for overlapping four-year terms. A mayor, treasurer, and a controller also
are elected for a four-year period. The mayor is the chief executive of the city
and enforces the ordinances of council. The mayor may veto ordinances which
can be overridden by a two-thirds majority of council. The mayor supervises the
work of all city departments and submits the annual city budget to council. This
form was adopted by nine cities by referenda. The last is the council-manager
form, in which all authority is lodged with council which is composed of five,
seven, or nine members elected at-large for a four-year term. A city treasurer
and controller also are elected. A city manager is appointed by council. The
manager is the chief administrative officer of the city and is responsible for
executing the ordinances of council. The manager appoints and may remove
department heads and subordinates. Only four cities use this method of city
A total of 16 third class cities have adopted home rule charters. Two cities
(DuBois and Altoona) have an optional council-manager plan and one city
(Hazleton) has a mayor-council optional plan.
33. There are a total of 500 schools districts in
Pennsylvania and are administered by the
Pennsylvania Public School Code of 1949. School
districts can comprise one single municipality, like the
School District of Philadelphia or can comprise multiple
municipalities. School districts have the sole
responsibility to instruct the school-aged population
of the Commonwealth.