January 21, 2013 |
Happy Craven Fernandez, 74, former Philadelphia city councilwoman, community activist, and college president, died Saturday, Jan. 19, of complications from a stroke at Penn Hospice at Rittenhouse. Dr. Fernandez underwent successful lung surgery Jan. 10, but suffered the stroke moments before being released from a hospital last Sunday. Her family reported Saturday that she died peacefully. "We are all so sad, but can smile when we think of the great days together and the great contributions she made over the years," her family wrote in an e-mail to friends.
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.
December 13, 2012 |
JOSEPH SIGISMONDI has been in the city's crosshairs for years. A contractor and owner of properties across the city, he's been cited numerous times for licensing and tax violations. On Monday, a building he owns on 2nd Street went up in flames, causing an elderly woman to be hospitalized and almost destroying the Fralinger String Band's props and floats just weeks before the Mummers Parade. In the four-alarm blaze's wake, neighbors and local representatives are asking: Did the city do its job in the months leading up to the fire?
November 18, 2012 |
IT'S BEGINNING to look a lot like the Christmas Village over in LOVE Park. Organizers of the outdoor shopping bazaar inspired by German Christmas markets are setting up on JFK Plaza, with plans to open Thanksgiving Day. The fair, now in its fifth year, moved last year to the park on JFK Boulevard near 15th Street from Dilworth Plaza, outside City Hall The village drew national attention two years ago, when the word Christmas was removed from the...
November 1, 2012 |
MAYOR Michael Bloomberg said Wednesday the NYC Marathon will go on as planned Sunday after Superstorm Sandy devastated the city. Marathon organizers had been moving forward with planning but awaited final word from the city about whether holding the race would be safe and viable with flooding, power outages and transit shutdowns still afflicting the five boroughs. New York Road Runners president Mary Wittenberg said that organizers were preparing to use more private contractors than past years to reduce the strain on city services.
November 1, 2012
American Sam Querrey used 18 aces to upset top-ranked Novak Djokovic , 0-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4, Wednesday in the second round of the Paris Masters. It marked the first time since the Miami Masters in March 2010 that Djokovic was eliminated so early in a tournament. Djokovic entered the court wearing a Darth Vader mask on Halloween and put on a show by winning the first set in just 21 minutes. But he started to waver under the relentless accuracy of Querrey's serve and made unforced errors the rest of the way. "It was a little embarrassing," the unseeded Querrey said.
October 6, 2012
Philadelphia's City Hall is an opaque mystery to most residents. We know there are thousands upon thousands of employees in there. We know taxpayers contribute $2.9 billion each year to run the place. But what, exactly, is city government doing? As it turns out - in the case of least one department - plenty. With little fanfare, the city last month began offering residents a firsthand look at the work of Licenses and Inspections employees, in the form of a clickable, interactive map at www.phila.gov/map . At first glance, it's just dots.
September 20, 2012 |
THE MADE IN AMERICA festival is officially paid for, and Mayor Nutter says taxpayers are off the hook. Nutter said concert promoter Live Nation has paid $505,124 to cover the city costs incurred by the Labor Day weekend event outside the Art Museum, featuring rap mogul Jay-Z. That includes a $200,000 security deposit and a payment made Wednesday of $305,124. Nutter did not break down exactly what the money covered. The contract for the event lists estimated costs for city services at $500,000, with the following split: police, $220,000; Fairmount Park, $120,000; emergency medical services, $90,000; sanitation, $60,000; licenses and inspections, $10,000; and health services, $1,000.
September 20, 2012 |
MAYOR NUTTER still hasn't released cost figures for the Made in America festival, but a contract for the Labor Day weekend event states that the promoter is responsible for all city expenses. So, are taxpayers off the hook for the for-profit concert outside the Art Museum, featuring rap mogul Jay-Z, produced by Live Nation and sponsored by Budweiser? City officials originally said that there would be some "cost sharing. " Mayor Nutter said Tuesday that the full details would be available "shortly.