Q&A: Darrell Clarke Talks About His Decision to Not Run for Mayor

Photo courtesy of City Council.

Photo courtesy of City Council.

Council President Darrell Clarke finally made official today what many political insiders have predicted all along: He will not be running for mayor. Instead, he’ll seek reelection in City Council. Clarke did not hold a press conference about the news, so we caught up with him over the phone Monday afternoon. He was his usual pithy self. Read more »

Labor Leader Asks Butkovitz to Reconsider Running for Mayor

Photo: Curtis Blessing

Photo: Curtis Blessing

The head of Philadelphia’s correctional officers union is urging City Controller Alan Butkovitz to reconsider his decision to not run for mayor this year.

Lorenzo North, president of Local 159, sent a letter to Butkovitz Wednesday, saying he should jump in the race because he has shown respect for Philadelphia’s unions and saved the city’s taxpayers “millions of dollars.” Local 159 is the biggest local in AFSCME District Council 33, the city’s blue-collar union.

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Mayoral Halfsies: Butkovitz Out (Sort of), Oliver In (Sort of)

Doug Oliver, left. Alan Butkovitz, right.

Doug Oliver, left. Alan Butkovitz, right.

The first real surprise of the mayoral race arrived this week, in the form of the sudden non-withdrawal/withdrawal of candidate/non-candidate Alan Butkovitz. The city controller had never formally declared his intentions, but he’d been assembling a staff and was widely considered one of the more potent candidates in the (admittedly meager) mayoral mix. Now he’s gone, at least for now, and the terrain of the race is considerably changed.

If Butkovitz had entered the race, he likely would have been a well-funded candidate, with a real base in the Northeast and the support of major city political figures. That might not have been enough to secure a win, of course. He certainly would have started the race an underdog to State Senator Anthony Williams, who is emerging as the consensus front-runner. But Butkovitz had a puncher’s chance.

That wasn’t good enough for him, apparently. He told the Inquirer yesterday, “Based on the conditions on the ground right now and the confusion and chaos of the current field right now, I don’t see a path to winning.”

What confusion and chaos is he referring to? Principally the agonizing indecision of Darrell L. Clarke. Butkovitz seems to think Clarke will run. But there’s been no clear signal on that score from Clarke whatsoever.

As one Democratic consultant put it, “Clarke’s sole campaign staffer is representing Philly Jesus right now.”

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Alan Butkovitz Won’t Run for Mayor

Alan Butkovitz

Alan Butkovitz. Photo: Cbrblessing


The Daily News reports that Alan Butkovitz, the city controller, will not be running for mayor. Butkovitz hadn’t announced a campaign, but he’d long been thought a likely candidate. Indeed, he’d been considered a leading candidate. Butkovitz had started to assemble a campaign staff, even hiring a former consultant to Joe Biden in April in anticipation of the expected run.
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Controller: Combine Tourism Agencies Into One Department

Philadelphia has two agencies that entice outsiders to come spend money here: Visit Philadelphia appeals to tourists; the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau tries to bring in big groups and trade associaitions for their annual meetings.

Now, City Controller Alan Butkovitz says the two agencies should become one. Philadelphia Business Journal reports the move could save $1 million annually.

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Butkovitz: Philly Schools Should Open Up Long-Hidden Works of Art

City Controller Alan Butkovitz just issued a press release calling on the Philadelphia School District to stop bogarting all its great art.

He said more than 200 pieces of art, with a total value of $4 million, have been concealed in a storage facility for the last decade. The schools should partner with the city’s art institutions to display those works to the public, Butkovitz said.

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