Morning Headlines: Kathleen Kane Survived One Ouster Attempt; The Next Has Already Begun
Good morning Philadelphia. Here’s what you need to know today.
The Pennsylvania Senate fell short of ousting Kathleen Kane Wednesday. Now it’s the House’s turn to try.
The Senate fell short of the two-thirds majority needed to boot Kane, the attorney general who faces criminal charges for allegedly leaking secret grand jury information. Even as that attempt failed, PennLive reports, the House voted to empower a subcommittee to investigate whether articles of impeachment should be brought against her. The investigation could be complete by spring — and, if warranted, prompt an impeachment trial back in the Senate later this year. Kane’s spokesman says the process is “premature,” and that legislators should let the legal process play out. Her trial on the criminal charges is scheduled for August.
Mayor Kenney today will end a controversial policy that temporarily closed some fire stations every day.
Philly Mag reports: Kenney’s spokeswoman says he will announce Thursday that he is eliminating the fire department’s policy — known as “brownouts” — of temporarily closing a handful of fire stations each day in rotating neighborhoods. In 2010, former Mayor Michael Nutter’s administration began using brownouts as a way to save almost $3 million a year amidst a budget crunch. Nutter insisted that brownouts did not compromise residents’ safety and called critics’ suggestions to the contrary “unnecessary hysteria.” Over the last 10 years, the number of annual fire deaths in Philadelphia has dropped by 77 percent. But the firefighters union fiercely argued that brownouts put citizens in harm’s way. Kenney, the son of a firefighter, promised to end brownouts during his mayoral campaign. When the firefighters union endorsed Kenney last February, it cited his opposition to brownouts as one of the reasons it supported him.
A “Black Lives Matter” banner has gone missing from a Cherry Hill church.
6ABC reports: “Sadly I was not surprised and was kind of expecting something like this at some point,” said Rev. Christian Schmidt, interim co-minister of Unitarian Universalist Church in Cherry Hill. The missing banner has been reported to police. “Our church has had a lot of conversations about racial justice and how we could be a part of helping make a better world frankly, and one way to do that is for our mostly white congregation to affirm that black lives matter and should matter in our community,” Schmidt said. The bottom of our sign, it says ‘Black Lives Matter’ and the bottom part is ‘Join The Discussion Here.’ That’s really what we want is a discussion.”
Delaware’s governor has signed a resolution apologizing for the state’s participation in slavery.
NewsWorks reports: “It’s not enough to know simply that slavery existed. And this egregious sin of our prior generation is not merely a fact of our state’s past,” Gov. Jack Markell, a Democrat, said before the signing. “A candid acknowledgement and acceptance of our past is the only way to understand our present and take responsibility for our future.” The resolution was sponsored in the General Assembly by Rep. Stephanie Bolden. “It’s important to start the healing process—it’s just the beginning,” Bolden said. “There’s so many things going on, but it’s the beginning. And people feel comfortable with the beginning and the acknowledgement.” The signed document will be displayed at the Delaware Public Archives.
The 76ers are making a habit of building huge leads and blowing them.
Just a few nights after they surrendered a 19-point against the L.A. Clippers, the Sixers gave away a game to the Kings — losing 114-110 even though they led by 12 entering the fourth quarter. A bright spot? Jahlil Okafor tied his career high with 26 points. “We just didn’t do a good job executing the last few minutes of the game,” Okafor said, ESPN reports. The other bright spot? The All-Star break is beginning — the Sixers don’t play again until Feb. 19.
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