Lawsuit: SCORES Strip Club Jeopardizes A.C. Casino Development

A federal lawsuit filed this week in New Jersey states that SCORES Atlantic City, a strip club that once operated inside the now-shuttered Trump Taj Mahal, is “impeding and compromising” the property owner’s plans to bring a Hard Rock Hotel & Casino to the location by wrongfully asserting its rights to renew its lease. Read more »

The Inquirer’s Parent Company Gets $1M to Fund Investigative Journalism, Diversity Efforts

lenfest

The Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News newspapers sit on display on a newsstand in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

The recently established Lenfest Institute for Journalism has announced the recipients of its first set of grant awards.

The nonprofit will distribute $2 million in funding to support diversity, innovation, and sustainability among journalism platforms and entrepreneurs in Philly, New York, California, Austin, and Cambridge, Mass. Half the money will benefit the institute-owned Philadelphia Media Network, parent company of the Inquirer, Philly.com and Daily News.

“We’re really trying to help build a renaissance of journalism across the ecosystem, not only PMN,” said Jim Friedlich, executive director of the Lenfest Institute. “We think there’s a digital news renaissance happening in Philadelphia, and we want to be very much a part of it.” Read more »

PATCO’s Philly Ghost Station Just Got Closer to Reopening

Photo by Mike Williams/DRPA.

Beneath the depths of Franklin Square sits an idle PATCO station which last saw customers walk through its turnstiles in 1979 – the same year that ESPN launched and Michael Jackson released his breakthrough solo album, Off the Wall. The station at 6th and Race streets has an interesting history of operation: It opened in 1936 as part of (SEPTA predecessor) Philadelphia Rapid Transit’s Bridge Line service, but closed in 1939 due to inactivity. It then was revived for stints from 1943-1946, 1952-1953 and then finally 1976-1979 as a PATCO stop. Read more »

Philly Police Seek ATM Skimmer Fraud Suspects

fraud, skimmer

Via the Philadelphia Police Department

Police are searching for suspects who allegedly installed skimming devices at ATMs in Philly, Bucks and Montgomery counties.

In multiple instances, the suspects placed one gadget over an ATM reader and another gadget over the machine’s cash dispenser, according to the PPD. The latter device allegedly contained a tiny camera that recorded PIN entries from bank customers.  Read more »

Here’s How You Can Help Puerto Rico After Hurricane Maria

maria, puerto rico

A family helps clean the road after Hurricane Maria hit the eastern region of the island, in Humacao, Puerto Rico, Tuesday, September 20, 2017. (AP Photo/Carlos Giusti)

Hurricane Maria plunged the already-pummeled Puerto Rico into total darkness on Wednesday, knocking out the island’s power grid with category 4 winds up to 155 mph.

In Philly, those with ties to the island prepared to ramp up support for its residents, who already suffered a devastating blow from Hurricane Irma just two weeks ago.

Dr. Carmen Febo San Miguel, executive director of North Philly’s Puerto Rico and Latino arts organization Taller Puertorriqueño, said people in Philly are reeling from the news and trying to get in touch with loved ones on the island.  Read more »

Chris Stigall Apologizes for DUI Arrest

Photo courtesy of the Tredyffrin Township Police Department.

This story has been updated with a statement from Chris Stigall.

As the host of 1210 WPHT’s morning show, it’s Chris Stigall’s job to poke fun at D-list celebs when they screw up – like he did when Saturday Night Live alum Chris Kattan was arrested for DUI in 2014:

But what happens now that the tables have turned? Read more »

Billy Penn Publisher Jim Brady Fires Writer for Calling Him Names

Jemele Hill in AP photo.

Who wants to work with someone who’s badmouthed you in the past? Apparently not Jim Brady, CEO of Spirited Media, the parent company of Philly blog Billy Penn. Brady has fired a freelance writer for a Spirited-owned website in Pittsburgh after that writer called him the “dumbest person alive.”

Hockey writer Dave Lozo took umbrage with Brady’s assessment of the Jemele Hill controversy, which arose after the ESPN SportsCenter anchor tweeted that Donald Trump is “a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists” and “Trump is the most ignorant, offensive president of my lifetime. His rise is a direct result of white supremacy. Period.”

Hill’s comments drew ire from big shots at the network and she was reprimanded, much to the chagrin of White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who called on ESPN to go all the way and fire Hill.

Former Phillies ace and onetime ESPN employee Curt Schilling called Hill a “racist” in an interview with Michael Smerconish on CNN, and earlier this week, Brady (who also works as ESPN’s public editor) himself took to Twitter to share his personal thoughts on the hot-button situation.

Brady also deleted the following Tweet:

Brady told Philly Mag that he’s been barred from going on record about ESPN, Jemele Hill or his tweets in response to her statements. “And I’m perfectly happy not to talk about it anymore,” he said. However, he was willing to speak to his firing of Lozo.

According to Brady, the decision to fire the writer wasn’t a tough one at all.

“Those who suggested it was a stupid call have likely never run a company, so they don’t understand how important it is to have people around you who believe in what you’re doing,” he told Philly Mag.

So what’s the lesson here? Don’t bite the thin-skinned hand that feeds you? Withhold the urge to effectively request your own termination on social media?

Lozo didn’t immediately return Philly Mag’s request to comment.

Follow @jtrinacria on Twitter.

City Commish: Nearly 100 Non-U.S. Citizens Voted in Philly

vote

L: City Commissioner Al Schmidt | R: Photo by William Thomas Cain/Getty Images

Republican City Commissioner Al Schmidt released a report on Wednesday claiming that hundreds of non-U.S. citizens have registered to vote in Philly, largely through the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

Schmidt’s office found that 220 non-U.S. citizens registered to vote in Philly between 2006 and 2017. Of those registrants, nearly half (41 percent) voted in at least one election in that time period, per the report. Read more »

Feds Slam Asplundh Tree Company Over Undocumented Workers

asplundh

File photo of Asplundh workers cleaning up after a 2016 snowstorm. Photo by Frank Eltman/AP

Willow Grove-headquartered Asplundh Tree Expert – one of the largest private companies in Pennsylvania, with an estimated annual revenue of $3.9 billion – has been charged by the feds with rehiring undocumented workers who were dismissed following a 2009 Homeland Security audit.

Federal prosecutors say a company official, who has not been named, and vice president and regional manager Larry Gauger of Wayne, instructed their employees to use false documentation after Homeland Security found more than 100 of Gauger’s employees working in the country illegally.  Read more »

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