Today’s City Reads
Local: Mayor Nutter creates a board to check on post-building collapse reforms
Politicians looove appointing commissions that issue recommendations. And they often seem to equally love letting those recommendations collect dust on a bookshelf somewhere.
Thankfully, that shouldn’t happen to the recommendations issued by a commission that was formed in the wake of the 2013 building collapse in Center City in order to improve Philadelphia’s Licenses & Inspections department.
Jared Brey of PlanPhilly reports Mayor Nutter has announced the creation of the Building Oversight Safety Board, which will keep an eye on the implementation of the suggested reforms (one of which, as it turns out, was starting an oversight board):
Nutter selected Michael Nadol to chair the new oversight board. Nadol is managing director at Public Financial Management, a group of consultants and advisors to governments and nonprofit groups. He has also served as deputy mayor and director of finance for the City of Philadelphia and as deputy commissioner for the Philadelphia Water Department. Nadol is a faculty member at the Fels Institute of Government at the University of Pennsylvania.
Also serving on the oversight board are 7th-District Councilwoman Maria Quiñones-Sánchez; Ann Marie Ambrose, former commissioner of the Department of Human Services; Ned Dunham of Kleinman LLC, who was chief of staff for the Special Advisory Commission; Angelo Perryman of Perryman Building and Construction Services; and Wendell Pritchett of the University of Pennsylvania School of Law. (Pritchett resigned from the School Reform Commission last June.)
National: A tradition-hating Boston neighborhood ends “dibs”
Technically, it’s illegal in Philadelphia to save your shoveled-out parking spot with a chair when it snows. But as anyone with eyes knows, that law isn’t exactly strictly enforced.
A neighborhood in Boston has decided to ban the practice of “dibs” — and the mayor’s office is putting some muscle behind the decree, reports the Boston Globe.
South Enders who see a space saver are encouraged to remove it. If they are afraid to do so, they can call the city to come do it. And the city’s trash contractors will collect all space savers they see on their twice-weekly rounds, with no grace period after a snow emergency.
“I say great, let’s try it and see what happens,” said Chris Edwards, who works as a creative director in advertising and has lived in the South End for 10 years. “I know it takes forever to shovel yourself out, but I’m sorry — it’s a public street and everybody has a right to it.”
Currently, Philadelphia’s streets department doesn’t remove space savers as a matter of policy. But city police have tried to curb their use by launching the #nosavesies social media campaign, which encourages residents to call 911 if they see one. Alas, orange cones and beat-up chairs still litter the streets. But the police department’s effort has, at least, been entertaining.