June 2, 2010
WHY IS IT that every time the mayors or Council members write a letter or talk to the media, they all talk about cutting city services, having to raise taxes, having taxpayers tighten our belts, but no one mentions cutting their huge budgets? I hope voters remember when they come up for re-election. Here's a ballot question: "Shall the City of Philadelphia abolish half the Council seats and all their perks in order to save the taxpayer's money to help reduce our property-tax increase and keep police and fire on the streets?"
February 17, 2009
I READ where Mayor Nutter had a 71 percent approval job rating. Is that true? Could it have been just 71 people total? With all the cutbacks in the fire department, libraries and other city services, and doubling the parking-meter rates, how many people would give him a positive approval rating? All he has done is give employers of ex-cons city tax credits and get ex-cons jobs at Goodwill. Could the ex-cons make up 71 percent of the people? Mayer Krain, Philadelphia
February 16, 1987
The city is decaying, make no mistake about it. All we have to do is look around. Consider the loud-mouth and defensive-looking members of City Council whose names immediately come to mind. Think about the corrupt judges and the farce called a Gas Commission. Think about the city services we're not getting. Call City Hall and you're exceptionally lucky if you get satisfaction. It's pretty bad when these civil servants think we work for them, rather than the other way around.
March 9, 2013
Saying he wanted to provide better service to Philadelphia's growing immigrant population, Mayor Nutter signed an executive order Thursday establishing the Mayor's Office of Immigrant and Multi-Cultural Affairs. The office will seek to improve access to city services for people whose English is limited. It also will help develop economic opportunities and educational resources. Nutter named Jennifer Rodriguez executive director of the office. She will be paid $100,000. Fernando Treviño-Martínez will serve as deputy director and will be paid $90,000.
June 8, 2008 |
To spend a day on the job with the city's new managing director, Camille Cates Barnett, is to pull your chair up to some of the cleanest, most paper-free desks and conference tables in all of North American municipal government. This is a woman who takes no notes. "I can remember what I need to know," says Barnett, 59. All day, her cell phone rings maybe one time, and it's the movers. She takes one crisis call, about Wi-Fi, and appoints a youngster to deal with it. Her handpicked performance management team keeps the details, a group of clean-cut wonkish youngsters who skate around her all day with charts and reports and solutions.
December 23, 2009
PITTSBURGH Mayor Luke Ravenstahl announced a deal Monday between city government and local universities that effectively kills his proposal to tax college tuition. That's good news, since taxing tuition was a terrible idea. But it's also good because the agreement gets bigger contributions from local universities and nonprofits - often called Payments in Lieu of Taxes - to pay for city services. In Philadelphia, the city has tried to strike a balance between collecting money from these untaxed organizations and trying to keep the burden relatively low. But colleges, universities and nonprofits also consume a lot of city services that need to be paid for. The deal in Pittsburgh might be a framework that could also apply locally.
July 14, 2004 |
TODAY, the mayor's two-week extension of the contract between AFSCME Local 2187 and the city expires. At the bargaining table, we are fighting for fair wages and benefit increases in the new contract. How does a fair contract for our members affect you? A fair contract for us ensures that there will be no work stoppage and that city services will run smoothly. A fair contract for us - meaning decent wages and benefits for vital city services - affects how the city runs. Who are the members of Local 2187?
September 30, 1992 |
The City Council last night formally requested Gloucester County to pay compensation in "lieu of taxes" for the use of city services such as police and fire protection. The county government owns about $18 million in properties in the city, and if those properties were taxed it would bring in nearly $300,000 a year. City officials have not determined how much they believe the county should pay. The city acts as the host community of the County Justice Complex at Euclid and Hunter Streets, the Gloucester County Courthouse on Delaware Avenue and a former medical office building at Broad and Hunter Streets with county offices.
July 8, 2009 |
Though the Fourth of July party in Philadelphia is primarily a city-sponsored event, this year organizers had to squeeze out dollars to pay for city services - more than $300,000. Without that payment, expenses for the Sunoco Welcome America celebration would have totaled $1.7 million, less than the $2.1 million price tag for last year, said City Representative Melanie Johnson, who also is the festival's executive director. Like other signature events - including the St. Patrick's Day and Mummers Parades - Welcome America has found itself paying for crowd control, sanitation, and emergency medical services.
February 4, 2012 |
The City of Philadelphia wants to hire an efficiency expert. Believe it or not, this may be a first for the city government. The Nutter administration issued a request for proposals Thursday, soliciting qualified firms to submit credentials to become an "Overhead Cost and Revenue Collection Consultant" to deal with multiple city agencies. On the cost side, the city is looking for an outside analysis of its utility bills, gasoline purchases, leasing, supply, and advertising costs, and outside legal fees.