Impending “Snow and Sleet Sandwich” Leads to Early Dismissals, Cancellations

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Did you hear? Of course you’ve heard: More ice and snow is on its way.

The Philadelphia area is actually taking a one-two-three hit from winter weather over the next few days. Phillywx is calling it a “Snow and Sleet Sandwich Storm.” Precipitation started across Pennsylvania earlier on Tuesday, and it is expected to roll into the Philadelphia area in an hour or so.

Your commute home is going to be messy: Per multiple forecasts, snow will be brief. It is expected to change over to sleet right at rush hour and move to freezing rain later in the evening. Temperatures are expected to rise above freezing sometime after 9; Phillywx says “road conditions should gradually improve through the night in the Philadelphia metro.” Read more »

Ramsey: “We Are Not at War With the Communities We Serve”

Commissioner Charles Ramsey discusses the recommendations of the White House Task Force on 21st Century Policing. Ramsey helped co-chair the task force.

Commissioner Charles Ramsey discusses the recommendations of the White House Task Force on 21st Century Policing. Ramsey helped co-chair the task force.

Philly Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey met the local media Tuesday morning to discuss the recommendations of the White House Task Force on 21st Century Policing that he helped co-chair, and what those recommendations mean for Philadelphia.

Some highlights: Read more »

Gov. Tom Wolf’s Pennsylvania Budget Announcement

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Governor Tom Wolf is announcing his big, bold agenda today at 11:30 a.m. and Philly Mag’s Holly Otterbein will be providing live updates of the address. (Read the full text of his address below, and read Holly Otterbein’s take on the five boldest elements of Wolf’s budget.)

Watch the live stream here, and follow along on Twitter:



Read more »

Ex-Stripper: Delilah’s Paid Dancers Less Than Minimum Wage

Some allegations from the lawsuit filed against Delilah's Den last month.

Some allegations from the lawsuit filed against Delilah’s Den last month.

Melody Schofield began dancing at Delilah’s Den in 2007. While dancing there, she says she had to purchase particular outfits to wear on certain days: Lingerie on Wednesdays, black and gold for the Entertainer of the Year contest, red and green at Christmas. She also says she had to pay a house fee of $30 to $85 for the opportunity to dance on stage, and that she had to tip the DJ, the house mom and the makeup artists. If she didn’t work at certain special events — such as the Wing Bowl After Party — she claims, she would be fined up to $250.

All of these allegations were made by Schofield, who went by Coco at the club, in a class-action lawsuit filed against the Spring Garden Street strip club last month. It was first reported by the Inquirer this morning. Schofield is the lead plaintiff in a potential class-action lawsuit her lawyer says could have hundreds of potential claimants. The suit is seeking a class of all dancers who have worked at Delilah’s in the last three years and receive some of their income in tips.

A spokesman for Delilah’s told the Inquirer the “stage lease fee” is a strip club industry standard but declined to comment on the suit. Schofield left the club in November 2014. Read more »

Montco Man Charged With Peeping at KOP Mall

This undated photo provided by the Radnor Township, Pa. police shows Sean Moses. Radnor Township, Pa. police arrested Moses on Monday, March 1, 2015, and charged him with 86 counts of invasion of privacy and one count of child pornography. Moses is accused of videotaping dozens of naked girls and women in dressing rooms at one of the country's largest malls and then posted the clips on pornography websites. (AP Photo/Radnor Township Police)

This undated photo provided by the Radnor Township, Pa. police shows Sean Moses. Radnor Township, Pa. police arrested Moses on Monday, March 1, 2015, and charged him with 86 counts of invasion of privacy and one count of child pornography. Moses is accused of videotaping dozens of naked girls and women in dressing rooms at one of the country’s largest malls and then posted the clips on pornography websites. (AP Photo/Radnor Township Police)

Police have arrested a Montgomery County man they say videotaped dozens of women and girls in changing rooms at King of Prussia Mall. Sean Moses is charged with 86 counts of invasion of privacy and one count of child pornography. Read more »

Report: Millions Live in Pa. Oil Train Evacuation Zones

Amid growing concern about the transportation of oil by train through Pennsylvania — and through Philadelphia, to the city’s refineries — environmental groups have released a report (below) suggesting that “millions” of residents live in “evacuation zones” likely to be affected if an accident happens.

PennLive:

According to a report by the environmental advocacy groups PennEnvironment and FracTracker, more than 3.9 million state residents live within the federally recommended half-mile evacuation zone of rail routes. Their data was based on all active freight lines in the state.

“Considering the burgeoning volume of oil train traffic and the rate of accidents, this is a very serious issue warranting heightened transparency, communications, and safety enhancements,” said Brook Lenker, FracTracker’s executive director.

PublicSource, a nonprofit news agency, released its own report Monday. Their analysis was based on data provided by railroads to federal regulators found that 1.5 million state residents are at risk.

Read more »

Ramsey-Led Policing Commission Makes Recommendations

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, co-chair,  the President's Task Force on 21 Century Policing, listens to witnesses at the Newseum in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2015. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, co-chair, the President’s Task Force on 21 Century Policing, listens to witnesses at the Newseum in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2015. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

The presidential task force on 21st century policing led by Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey has issued its “interim” report. Ramsey will hold a press conference on the findings this morning with Philly media.

NBC News reports:

In a report released Monday, Obama’s task force on police reform did not embrace proposed policies like requiring police officers to wear body cameras or linking federal funding for local police departments to requirements all of their officers undergo racial bias training.

The 11-person task force, chaired by Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey and Laurie Robinson, a professor of criminology at George Mason University, instead recommended less sweeping changes.

Its “overarching recommendation” was for Obama to create a so-called National Crime and Justice Task Force to suggest more ideas. The report also urged, as civil rights leaders have long demanded, that police departments collect more precise data about the race and other demographic characteristics of people who are stopped and arrested.

Read more »

Bill Green Gives the Backstory of His SRC Ouster

Bill green

If he had been shaken by the events of the last 24 hours, Bill Green wasn’t showing it when he appeared late Monday afternoon at Philadelphia School District Headquarters. He was all smiles and handshakes as he entered a meeting where students were being asked to weigh in on an issue — the district’s budget woes — that adults haven’t been able to fully resolve.

There wasn’t even an awkward moment when Matthew Stanski, the district’s chief financial officer, referred to Green as “Chairman Green” during public comments. Green — for now, anyway — is no longer the chairman of the School Reform Commission. Gov. Tom Wolf announced Sunday that he was replacing Green with fellow commissioner Marjorie Neff. Green has said he will seek a court ruling challenging Wolf’s authority to do so.

He told Philly Mag that events started rolling on Saturday. Read more »

GOP Leaders Slam Tom Wolf for Booting Bill Green

Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, Rep. Mike Turzai, R-Allegheny, speaks Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015, at the state Capitol in Harrisburg, Pa.

Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, Rep. Mike Turzai, R-Allegheny.

Republican leaders in the General Assembly are decrying Gov. Tom Wolf‘s decision this week to oust Bill Green as chairman of the Philadelphia School Reform Commission. The move comes after Green went against Wolf’s wishes and voted this February to create seven new charter schools of 39 that were being proposed. (Five charters were ultimately approved.)

Wolf has appointed Marjorie Neff, who voted against every charter school application last month, to serve as the new chair of the SRC.

“It is unfortunate that Governor Wolf has, once again, chosen to side with public employee unions, in this case to the detriment of the children of Philadelphia,” said Republican Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati.

Read more »

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