December 11, 2006 |
THE MORE I talk to taxpayers, the more I hear the same complaint: With taxes so high, wouldn't it be nice if we the people at least received our money's worth in services? Philadelphians deserve a city government that is effective, cost-efficient and responsive to their needs. That gets the job done right, on time, within budget. That's accountable to all residents and all neighborhoods. And here's how: City Service Reform. Getting there means implementing an innovative and highly successful performance-management strategy called CitiStat.
January 16, 2013 |
By Jim Kenney City Council will soon begin discussing one of the most important questions it's dealt with in a generation: how to create a more equitable property tax system. But as part of this debate about how we are levying taxes and collecting revenue, we should address an equally important issue: what we're spending taxpayer money on and whether we're getting what we're paying for. The city's Actual Value Initiative has initiated a reassessment of the nearly 600,000 commercial and residential properties in Philadelphia, some of which have not been assessed since the 1980s.
April 22, 1987 |
Residents of North and West Philadelphia soon won't have to come to Center City to pay real estate taxes or order a copy of a birth certificate. Managing Director James S. White said yesterday that within two months those areas will have mini-city halls, modeled after the Northeast Municipal Services Center that opened in September 1985. White said final sites have not been chosen. But he said the city's goal is to place both service centers in locations "where people would normally go while taking care of other business.
August 24, 1999
'What changes would you like to see in your neighborhood once the new mayor takes office?" That's the question we're asking people from neighborhoods all over Philadelphia. Below is the second of a series of 11 "Neighborhood Dialogues" that will run right up to voting day. Participants were chosen from among folks involved in the Citizen Voices project. Our focus in this second dialogue is South Philadelphia. Charles Baltimore and Scott Drake live in different parts of South Philadelphia.
November 24, 2001 |
Philadelphians are a tiny bit less satisfied with city services this year than they were in 2000, but they still seem much more pleased than they were five years ago. In the latest annual citizen survey and report on city services, about 62 percent of 1,100 respondents rated themselves either "very" or "somewhat" satisfied with how the city was doing its job in fiscal year 2001, down from 63 percent in fiscal year 2000. That compares to only 41 percent who gave city services a positive review in 1997.
December 8, 1988 |
Are we moving to a state of genocide here in Philadelphia? City officials, under the Home Rule Charter, are supposed to provide services to the citizens in such a way that their health and well-being are maintained. Are we being provided adequate services when our Police Department is understaffed; when our fire stations are closed and not replaced; when fire engines needed to fight fires are used to answer emergency rescue calls; when our health centers are being privatized, understaffed and under-supplied; when our Streets Department workers no longer sweep our streets?
February 18, 1987 |
Even as his administration's snow-removal procedures were being assailed in City Council, Mayor Goode said yesterday that he would fare well if Democratic mayoral challenger Edward G. Rendell made city services a campaign issue. "April, May, . . . the issue will not be snow removal," Goode said. "The issue will be trash pickup, police protection, fire protection, public property services. And I'm saying, look across the board at all of those and you will see absolute improvement.
July 8, 1986
As negotiations with striking city employees resumed yesterday there were indications that a settlement might be imminent under terms similar to those that were discussed publicly by Mayor Goode over the holiday weekend. They included substantial increases in wages and in city payments for health and welfare benefits. The city would get new authority to audit health and welfare expenditures and retain the right to contract city services to private firms. What is most important to the people of Philadelphia, though, is what they can expect to see in the way of improved municipal services, including trash collection, and more imaginative use of private contracting to cut government costs.
June 10, 2010 |
With tempers still flaring over Mayor Nutter's decision to stop using city dollars to cover the cost of parades and street festivals, one event has been quietly allowed to get a free ride: Welcome America, the nonprofit group that is host to Philadelphia's Fourth of July party. In the days after last year's celebration of the nation's birth, Welcome America's executive director vowed to repay City Hall $300,000 for crowd control, cleanup, and police and emergency-medical services. That commitment was in keeping with a new and controversial administration policy that requires organizers of the Mummers Parade, the St. Patrick's Day Parade, and other traditional events to absorb the costs for city services.
May 18, 1992
Some in Washington suggest that so-called "enterprise zones" are the answer to many of America's inner-city problems. They can be. But the American Street corridor in Philadelphia's Kensington section shows evidence, not only of the good in these zones, but also of the bad and the downright ugly. Since 1979, every conceivable federal, state and local economic development program has pumped grants, loans and technical assistance into making American Street a showplace. The success of these efforts is visible, and encouraging: Sixty-five companies that employed thousands of people have been assisted.