February 28, 2001 |
In his Jan. 23 budget address, Mayor Street promised to give City Council legislation necessary to finance his $250 million blight-elimination plan by the end of February. It now appears he will not make good on that promise. Late yesterday, Council members received a memo from the head of Street's blight-elimination program saying the administration hoped to introduce the financing plan before March 30. Pat Smith, who heads the program, known as the Neighborhood Transformation Initiative, said the administration would brief Council and provide the bills after members wrap up budget hearings, which are expected to conclude at the end of March.
May 21, 1999 |
If John Street thought he was uniting the party on election night when he invited his defeated rivals to lunch the next day, he might have better considered the old Lennon-McCartney wisdom: Let it be. And when he told reporters the next day he'd like an apology from opponent Marty Weinberg, he might have remembered that silence is sometimes golden. It's Weinberg's voters - conservative and moderate white Democrats - that Republican Sam Katz will hope to win over in November, and Weinberg said yesterday Street isn't making it easier for Weinberg and his supporters to join forces with the Democratic nominee.
November 4, 1999 |
Sam Katz was sending a message yesterday when he walked into the dining room at the Palm, the most prominent feeding spot for political animals of all kinds in Philadelphia. "I'm not going to go away. " Scarcely 11 hours earlier, in the ballroom of a Center City hotel, Katz had conceded a razor-close mayor's race to John F. Street. He had gone home to West Mount Airy to get some sleep at 3 a.m. But two hours later, he was up. After more than a year of hard campaigning, his body could not rest.
May 4, 2000 |
The Street administration is considering a multimillion-dollar bailout of the cash-strapped Philadelphia Gas Works. The proposal, which administration and company officials say is only one of several "contingencies," was broached in a recent meeting with some City Council members and other officials. Thomas Knudsen, who was brought in by the Street administration in mid-March as the interim chief financial officer, said he had been asked how much money the company might need.
March 10, 1992 |
In the past two months, Council President John Street has been quietly building something on the fourth floor of City Hall. Some call it a shadow government aimed at tracking the Rendell administration's every move. Others see a formidable political machine. The truth is probably that it's a little of each. Street has been busily recruiting technocrats and politicos - suggesting that he has a two-pronged view of power. Economists and lawyers are joining the Council payroll to cope with the city's fiscal crisis and a raft of legislation expected from the Rendell administration.
July 4, 2007
By camping out for an iPhone, Mayor Street put Philadelphia on the world's radar screen last week - even as he was pilloried in his own town. At one point in Street's 15-hour wait for an Apple phone, a passer-by asked how the mayor could lust after a gadget while the bodies of the city's murder victims piled up. Democratic nominee Michael Nutter even joined in, unwisely, saying, "There are a few things that are critically important to being mayor...
June 19, 2001 |
HOPING TO relive the glory of their abandoned-car crusade, Mayor Street's team is now marching through the city with a one-time cleaning of 31,000 vacant lots. I like it. The key to policy impact is simplicity - because that makes it possible to stay on message, which makes it possible to mobilize people and resources, to persist in the face of distraction and setbacks, and to achieve progress at a scale large enough to matter. The car-removal effort was simple. Cars are abandoned on our streets each year.
April 30, 1999 |
David L. Cohen has never held elective office. He's not a ward leader, and won't have a street force on Election Day. But apart from Mayor Rendell himself, he's the Democrat whose endorsement Philadelphia's mayoral candidates would probably most like to have. But Cohen, Rendell's legendary former chief of staff and now chairman of the Ballard Spahr law firm, has done his best to keep a low profile in the hotly-contested Democratic primary. Cohen is torn by loyalty to Rendell, who is firmly behind John Street, and his friendship with State Sen. Vince Fumo, who is Marty Weinberg's most fanatical backer.
May 8, 1995 |
In three years on City Council, Jannie Blackwell has done more than shed pounds and upgrade her wardrobe. She's evolved from a loyal soldier of Council President John Street into a highly unpredictable legislator jousting with bureaucrats and colleagues alike. Just ask Philadelphia Housing Authority officials, whom she's banged around, School District employees, who've jumped at her wishes, or the Rendell administration, which has heeded her warnings about the treatment of the homeless.
January 13, 1993 |
It's hard to give up the image of the Philadelphia City Council as a haven for criminals, drones and windbags. After all, in the last dozen years Council has provided a spectacle of corruption, political invective, fistfights on the floor and its own style of gridlock. But the city's dire fiscal condition, the rise of Council President John Street, new blood on Council and a powerful alliance between Street and Mayor Rendell are beginning to break up the old image. "We were the laughingstock for years, but we're not anymore," says Councilman Thacher Longstreth, the Republican sage on a Democratic Council.