Scranton has the third highest Earned Income Tax rate in Pennsylvania, behind Philadelphia and Reading, according to the Federal & State Tax Information Portal. Scranton is the only small city in Pennsylvania that has a privilege mercantile tax, which is based on gross receipts of a business.
Residents of Scranton have accused the city of violating Act 511, which limits the amount of taxes that can be collected in a fiscal year. On September 20, Judge James Gibbons ruled that the city must certify its tax collections by mid-December.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) reports that the number of drug overdoses in the state of Pennsylvania continues to rise with 5,456 deaths in 2017, compared to 4,642 in 2016. Put in another context, 42 out of every 100,000 Pennsylvanians died from drug overdoses in 2017.
This crisis hits close to home for Scranton residents. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the per-capita prescription rate of opioids in Lackawanna County was the second highest in the state in 2016, at 112.1 per 100 individuals compared to the state prescription rate of 69.5 per 100 individuals in 2016.
The population in Scranton has shrunk from 140,000 in 1930 to 77,605 as of 2017. Unemployment rate in Scranton is 5.2% and the median household income: $38,232
Approximately 50 percent Scranton residents rent their homes. According to the United States Census Bureau, the percentage of renters in Scranton is 49 percent, which is 12 percentage points higher than the national average of 37 percent.
Compiled by Natalia Kniazhevich