3 Reasons Mayor Nutter Shouldn’t Build That New Prison

Shutterstock.com

Shutterstock.com

At first glance, you can’t blame Mayor Michael Nutter for wanting to build a new prison. The House of Correction — which has an awesome name — is super old and doesn’t even have air conditioning. Both the inmates and the staffers deserve better conditions than the facility can provide.

Still: Nutter should hold off. Let the next mayor deal with it, if necessary, but not this year.

Why? Three reasons: Read more »

Is Condo King Allan Domb About to Run for Council?

Photo of Allan Domb in the lobby of Parc Rittenhouse by Laura Kicey Read more at http://www.phillymag.com/tag/allan-domb/#yov81b2TdtFSVoOi.99

Photo of Allan Domb in the lobby of Parc Rittenhouse by Laura Kicey

Developer Allan Domb, a/k/a the Center City condo king, is one of Philadelphia’s biggest movers and shakers. Is he about to run for City Council?

It sure looks like it.

Domb authorized a political action committee this Tuesday called “Allan Domb for City Council,” according to documents filed with the Philadelphia Board of Elections. The documents show he is seeking the office of Democratic City Council At-Large (check out the docs below).

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The Brief: Michael Nutter’s “Historic” L&I Investment

Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco

Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco

Watchdogs have said for years that Philadelphia’s Licenses & Inspections department is dangerously underfunded.

It was a victim of the recession, enduring cutbacks in staff under Mayor Michael Nutter. During his budget address Thursday, Nutter proposed an additional $5.5 million for the department next fiscal year, which would translate into 43 new employees. By 2018, he said L&I plans to boost its staff by 20 percent.

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Does Michael Nutter’s Property Tax Stand a Chance?

Philadelphia City Council  | Photo Credit: City Council's Flickr page

Philadelphia City Council | Photo Credit: City Council’s Flickr page

It’s never easy for a mayor to sell a tax hike.

So the fact that Mayor Michael Nutter is asking City Council to raise property taxes by 9 percent to help fund Philadelphia’s cash-strapped schools as 15 of 16 Council members are running for re-election is fairly gutsy. Oh, and he’s also proposing this after property taxes have gone up three times during his tenure. And a year after the first round of property tax bills went out under his Actual Value Initiative, a citywide reassessment that boosted taxes for some residents.

Is this remotely doable?

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Councilman Jones: Nutter’s Property Tax Hike Proposal a “Heavy Lift”

Councilman Curtis Jones. Photo | City Council Flickr

Councilman Curtis Jones Jr.; Photo | City Council Flickr

Before Mayor Michael Nutter even gave his final budget address Thursday, there were signs his plan to raise property taxes was on life support.

Nutter is going to propose this morning a 9.3 percent increase in the property tax rate to provide an infusion of cash to the city’s financially troubled schools. The Philadelphia School District is facing an $80 million budget deficit in 2015-16, and has asked the city for an extra $103 million.

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State Legislators Want to Bigfoot Philly’s New Sick Leave Ordinance

HARRISBURG-VS-CITY-HALL-940X540

Pennsylvania legislators met yesterday in Harrisburg to hone a bipartisan amendment that would vitiate the seven-plus years of work that went into Philadelphia’s sick leave ordinance by making it retroactive to January 1st of this year.

SB333, proposed by state Sen. John Eichelberger and state Sen. Lisa Boscola, “would provide for clear state preemption of local mandated leave ordinances.” Such ordinances, a memo from the legislators suggests, represent overreach by local governments, which should apparently be confined to a certain “sphere of power” that doesn’t obstruct the uniform application of public policy. Read more »

Tom Wolf’s Incredible Plan to Overhaul Philly Taxes

tom-wolf-budget-940x540

Gov. Tom Wolf unveiled his first budget plan for Pennsylvania Tuesday, and it’s nothing if not ambitious.

What got a little lost in the coverage of Wolf’s budget address, though, is that he is also proposing big changes for Philadelphia’s local taxes. The Wolf administration says his budget would provide about $538 million in tax relief for the city, which would be funded by his planned hike on statewide personal income and sales taxes. Here are the specifics, via Wolf spokesman Jeffrey Sheridan, which he says would all go into effect in 2016-17:

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Listen To the Pro-Ori Feibush Rap Song

Photo Credit: Ori Feibush | OCF Realty

Ori Feibush | Photo Credit: OCF Realty

Zaa Geez, a South Philadelphia rapper, has released a song about none other than City Council candidate Ori Feibush.

Zaa Geez compares Feibush to Martin Luther King, Jr., Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen. You know what? Just listen for yourself:

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