November 27, 2012
In the hopes of increasing voter turnout, a New Jersey state senator wants to encourage democracy by opening the polls 15 days before an election. By contrast, Pennsylvania is still stuck in a battle to limit civic engagement with an exclusionary voter-ID law that may be enforced by the courts in future elections. In mid-December, Commonwealth Judge Robert E. Simpson Jr. is set to revisit his decision upholding Harrisburg's restrictive voter-ID law. Don't think that the law is dead just because he halted its implementation for the Nov. 6 election.
November 23, 2012
A man was pronounced dead on Thanksgiving Day shortly after he jumped off the New Hope Toll Bridge along Route 202 in Bucks County, police said. Police received a report of a person lying face down in the Delaware River at 1:32 p.m. Rescue units and a dive team recovered the man in full cardiac arrest, according to Breaking News Network, which monitors police radio traffic. The man was taken to the New Jersey side of the river, where he was pronounced dead, a spokesman at the state police Kingwood station confirmed.
November 23, 2012 |
A man was pronounced dead by New Jersey State Police on Thanksgiving Day shortly after he jumped off the New Hope Toll Bridge along Rte. 202 in Bucks County, police said. Police received the report of a person lying face down in the Delaware River at 1:32 p.m. Rescue units and a dive team were dispatched to the scene, according to Breaking News Network, a firm which monitors police radio traffic. Rescue units lost sight of the floating form until 1:52 p.m., when the man was recovered in full cardiac arrest, the news network reported.
November 20, 2012 |
From the Schuylkill's west bank, Bartram's Garden offers evocative views of Philadelphia in all its glory and grit. Standing in scruffy grass at the water's edge, you can see Center City skyscrapers stretch toward the clouds, while farther south, massive oil-storage tanks loom like metallic moons. Not many people get to see the city this way, but that may be about to change. Mayor Nutter and Parks Department officials are proposing a 1.1-mile trail to be known as Bartram's Mile that would link the east side of the river to the west and continue on that side of the Schuylkill.
October 30, 2012
HERE'S WHAT will be making news in Philadelphia this week: CITY HALL Council considers school closings Debate over the future of the embattled Philadelphia School District will continue in City Council. Council's education committee was set to meet Tuesday to discuss a report released over the summer that suggests school closings and other methods to improve the district's finances. The report proposes closing up to 57 schools and modifying teacher contracts as a way to get the district out of the red. But the findings drew criticism from the teachers union, which has called it a proposal to dismantle the district.
October 30, 2012 |
Sandy's rising winds and rains forced evacuations and closings across the Philadelphia region Monday afternoon, as millions braced for what could be a once-in-a-lifetime storm. Officials' main message: Stay home. Don't travel. And if threatened by the storm, evacuate to higher ground or to a shelter, bunches of which were open and operating this afternoon. Still, people made wet last-minute runs for flashlight batteries, food and gasoline, even as the wind kicked debris across roads and shook trees to their roots.
October 18, 2012 |
If there is a boating accident, oil spill, or potential terrorist threat, a 14-mile stretch of the Delaware River just south of Philadelphia now has heightened surveillance. A sophisticated system of cameras, radar, and video monitors designed by Boeing Co. has been set up at three undisclosed locations between the Commodore Barry Bridge, Marcus Hook, and Hog Island in Tinicum, aimed at providing increased riverfront security and the capacity to prevent, or react to, adverse events.
October 16, 2012 |
John Leighton made a valiant effort to resist the pull of the family office-supply business. After graduating from Villanova University in 2005 with a degree in finance and accounting, the Media native took a job in investments. That was fine, until the economy collapsed two years later. Then it wasn't so much fun. "My dad saw the opportunity to persuade me to come back here," Leighton said recently during an interview from the president's desk at Office Basics Inc. in Boothwyn.
October 12, 2012
THE MACHINE holding the most danger for the city is not, as some might think, the political machine. It's the wayback machine - that contraption that whooshes us to the past and ensures that we never do things any different from how we have for years. Over the past few years, the city has avoided a fair number of trips to the past - approving a new zoning code for example, was significant step into the future - although thanks to the wayback machine we still enjoy such relics as walking-around money, patronage jobs, backroom deal-making, a corrupted property-tax system and a paucity of women in elected office, to name just a few. We were dismayed when the ghost of the wayback machine emerged a few weeks ago, with the approval of high-rise housing projects on the Delaware River waterfront that are counter to well-crafted guidelines for waterfront development that make up the central Delaware master plan.
September 23, 2012 |
The three boats, bobbing by rows of kayaks, swan boats, and wooden rowboats in the marina just south of Market Street, don't look like much. Painted a jaunty blue and white, and emblazoned with the names of Philadelphia luminaries - William Penn, Ben Franklin, and Stephen Girard - they're dwarfed by the battleship across the Delaware and the tall ship across the marina. They haven't even embarked on their maiden voyages. But the three water taxis represent what Philadelphia waterfront officials hope is the beginning of a new future for the Delaware River - one where water travel isn't a novelty.