RESPONSE: Wawa Is Working to Balance Everyone’s Needs at Broad and Walnut

Photo via Google Maps.

I want to bring your attention to the recent article written by Joe Trinacria, “Like You, Ed Rendell Hates the Wawa at Broad and Walnut.” We are deeply concerned about its negative view of an important urban problem that needs the full attention of business, government, nonprofits, and citizens.

We believe targeting any single retailer to make a point on homelessness without posing any solutions is unfair and takes us a step back. Is this type of negativity really the best way to serve your readers, the citizens of Philadelphia, and those who are homeless? We’re sure you would agree that homelessness is an issue that affects all of us and requires a collective effort to work together for productive solutions. Read more »

Like You, Ed Rendell Hates the Wawa at Broad and Walnut

Wawa image via Google Maps

On my morning walks to Philly Mag’s offices on Washington Square I trek northbound across Center City, occasionally taking Broad Street up to Walnut and navigating construction zones until I’m steered back onto the sidewalk by the Wawa. That’s typically when I’m hit with a waft of what I assume can only be a mix of spilled Turkey Hill iced teas, trash can juice, and urine. Oh yes, it’s a lovely start to the day.

Count me among the many who were excited about the potential of a Wawa at Broad and Walnut when it first opened. But today, as I’m incessantly harassed by a regular crew of panhandlers drawn to the free bathrooms and 24-hour foot traffic of Philly’s favorite convenience store, I don’t know anymore — it’s not as bad a look as the old Forum on Market Street, but it’s close. And you know who’s with me on this? Ex-mayor and ex-governor Ed Rendell. Read more »

Pa. House Committee: Um, Ed, About That DNC Surplus …

rendell, harrisburg, capitol

The state House Appropriations Committee would like former Gov. Ed Rendell to testify about how the 2016 Democratic National Convention Host Committee spent $10 million in taxpayer money.

Rendell, who chaired the host committee, has reportedly agreed to answer legislators’ questions. The DNC host committee’s spending is already subject to an investigation by Pa. Auditor General Eugene DePasquale, who said he would probe the committee’s spending after Gov. Tom Wolf asked him to do so earlier this month.  Read more »

Report: DNC Committee Promised to Give Leftover Funds to Charity

Democratic National Convention at Wells Fargo Center - end

Photo: Dan McQuade

The Philadelphia 2016 Host Committee for the Democratic National Convention had pledged to donate money left over after the event to charity, according to a report published by Philly.com this weekend.

But the committee used about $1 million of that surplus money to hand out bonus checks (ranging between about $13,000 and $220,000) to its own staff (which was offered weekly salaries) last November.
Read more »

Philly DNC Host Committee Gave Out $1 Million in Staff, Volunteer Bonuses

Democratic National Convention at Wells Fargo Center - end

Photo: Dan McQuade

The Philadelphia 2016 Host Committee for the Democratic National Convention handed out about $1 million in bonus checks to staff and volunteers after the event wrapped up last summer.

The bonuses, pulled from funds left over after the convention, were distributed in November. Former Gov. Ed Rendell, who chaired the Host Committee, told Philly.com that he’d planned to hand out bonuses to committee staff all along – provided the committee had enough money left over afterward.  Read more »

Rendell Endorses Rebecca Rhynhart for City Controller

Courtesy of Rebecca Rhynhart's campaign

Courtesy of Rebecca Rhynhart’s campaign

Former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell has endorsed Rebecca Rhynhart in the race for Philadelphia City Controller.

Rhynhart, 42, stepped down from her role as Mayor Jim Kenney’s chief administrative officer shortly before she announced her run against third-term incumbent Alan Butkovitz last December.  Read more »

Philly’s Biggest Losers of 2016

Background image by M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia™

Background image by M. Edlow for Visit Philadelphia™

Now that the last shreds of wrapping paper have been vacuumed up and the good dishes are finally put away, we revisit our time-honored tradition of taking a look back at the year and the losers, miscreants, and ne’er-do-wells it spawned. (For a more optimistic view of Philadelphia, consider Holly Otterbein‘s Biggest Winners of 2016.)

Ed Rendell

The once-lovable former champion of the everyman now spends his time being largely irrelevant and making facepalm-worthy comments in places like the Washington Post. But when you’re pulling in a cool $5,000 each month to do virtually nothing for a casino in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, you probably don’t care. Read more »

As Philly’s Ex-Mayors Stump for Clinton, Some Ask: “Who?”

Ed Rendell, John Street, Wilson Goode

Ed Rendell, John Street and Wilson Goode pose with Philadelphians under the Clothespin on Monday | Photo: Dan McQuade

“Look at this white cat down there dressed like a gangsta?! Whatever, I’m going to go get my photo taken with Mayor Street.”

I’m standing on the steps under the Clothespin, where three former Philadelphia mayors are holding court. The man behind me is talking about Ed Rendell, who’s dressed in a blue power suit and shaking hands with people as they come down the steps. “Don’t forget to vote tomorrow!” he says to a man who brushes by him. Wilson Goode is there, too, dressed to the nines. Then there’s John Street, who is wearing a leather jacket with the Super Bowl XXIX logo on it.

This is a Murderer’s Row of Philadelphia politicians, three men who were mayor for a combined 24 years. And a lot of people didn’t know who they were. And why not? Only Rendell ran for elected office after leaving the mayoral office, and it’s been nearly six years since he left the governor’s office. So there are good reasons why commuters — who just wanted to get back on the El for the first time in a week — didn’t stop to recognize three former Philadelphia mayors standing together.

Still, it was pretty funny. Read more »

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