Friday, August 22, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

POSTED: Friday, August 22, 2014, 1:33 PM
Mayor Nutter today announced terms of a new contract with District Council 33, which represents 10,000 blue-collar city workers. (File Photo)

Mayor Nutter today touched pen to paper, inking a deal with District Council 33, the union that represents 10,000 blue-collar city workers.  

The deal comes more than five years late. DC33's last contract ended in mid-2009.

DC33 members will receive a $2,800 signing bonus within 30 days of ratifying the deal, with a 3.5 percent raise on Sept. 1 and a 2.5 percent raise on July 1.  

POSTED: Thursday, August 21, 2014, 11:02 AM

Hey, it's OK! Taney hits a bump in the road to the title, but they're not finished yet, writes Stephanie Farr from Williamsport. 

Collapse suspects from 22nd and Market incident seek separate trials, in this report from Mensah M. Dean. 

U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan kicks off book tour in Philly, but not without a little rumbling in the street. I talk with him one-on-one. 

POSTED: Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 11:15 AM

Ferguson needs Obama to deliver his own message of hope and change. John Baer growls that the President should realize dispatching the attorney general to Missouri doesn't send the same message as he could by showing up. 

City hopes plaza Dilworth the wait! I report on the press announcement of the ribbon-cutting now weeks away on the massive makeover that took two years. 

Cop's head grazed by bullet. Suspect was fatally shot yesterday, writes David Gambacorta.

POSTED: Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 2:30 PM
A rendering of a view of a renovated Dilworth Plaza. (KieranTimberlake and Olin)

OK, so it's $5 million over budget and about five months late, but the completion of Dilworth Plaza on the west side of City Hall is only a few weeks away, Center City District CEO Paul Levy said this morning during a news conference downtown. 

The once drab, concrete maze known as Dilworth Plaza is slated for a rebirth - and a new name - after Center City District officials announced they are closing in on the renovations today.

Imagine bubbling urban fountains, vast green spaces, live music and an outdoor cafe that serves booze right on the City Hall apron for the dayworker yearning for happy hour to start early. It's all coming to fruition in the form of Dilworth Park, the city's lively new centerpiece scheduled for a ribbon-cutting Sept. 4. 

POSTED: Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 8:35 AM

Care-faker? Bucks cops: 'Caretaker' caught on camera abusing Alzheimer's patient, 90 years old. Tiny camera in granny's assisted-living room catches alleged beating. Jason Nark reports

Watch that man: Ajay Raju - a mayor in the making? Could influential business leader be catalyst for change in Philadelphia? This reporter helps answer some of those questions. 

Feud over NAACP finances festers. Chris Brennan writes of how friends-turned-foes of J. Whyatt Mondesire are still waiting for him to comply with a judge's order to turn over financial records. 

POSTED: Monday, August 18, 2014, 9:10 AM

The Taney Dragons, a Little League team with a city of 1.5 million people rooting for it, managed a come-from-behind win over Pearland, Texas yesterday.  Next up, Las Vegas.  The World Series in Williamsport has taken on a Philly flavor, with Taney team merchandise selling out.  City Hall's courtyard was again packed with cheering fans watching the game on big-screen televisions.

John Baer checks in on the always shady system of "per diem" expenses for state legislators.

The letters are 16-feet-tall and weigh 3,000 pounds each, so removing the old PNB logo from atop a Center City building is proving more complicated than anticipated.

POSTED: Friday, August 15, 2014, 2:16 PM
Former Mayor John Street was cleared by the State Ethics Commission for awarding PHA contracts to a law firm that employed his son. (Staff Photo)

The State Ethics Commission says former Mayor John Street did not violate the Ethics Act when he voted as chairman of the Philadelphia Housing Authority to approve a contract of up to $7.5 million for a law firm that employed his son.

Four of the seven commission members, in a ruling released today, said they do “not condone the conduct at issue in this case” but had to decide in Street’s favor because the contract was part of a package that included contracts for other law firms.

Two members, including Commission Chairman, John Bolger, dissented in the ruling, writing that “the ban on use of public office for a private pecuniary gain for the public official himself or immediate family is at the heart of the Ethics Act.”

POSTED: Friday, August 15, 2014, 10:26 AM

Ed Neilson was quietly sworn in as City Council's newest member yesterday, nearly three months after he won a special election for the at-large seat.  But will he finish the 17 months left in the term of former Councilman Bill Green, who resigned in February to be chairman of the School Reform Commission?   To hear the former state representative tell it, only time will tell.

Political candidates, including Gov. Corbett and Tom Wolf, help Daily News columnist Stu Bykofsky pass the $500,000 mark on his Comedy Night fundraiser for the Variety Club.

Chaka Fattah Jr. pleads not guilty to 23 federal counts and again claims the feds are really after his father, U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah Sr.

About this blog
Chris Brennan, a native Philadelphian and graduate of Temple University, joined the Daily News in 1999. He has written about SEPTA, the Philadelphia School District, the legalization of casino gambling, state government, the mayor, the governor, City Council and political campaigns. E-mail tips to brennac@phillynews.com
 Follow Chris on Twitter

Jenny DeHuff is a 2005 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where she cut her teeth in journalism. A South Philly transplant from New England, she joined the Daily News City Hall Bureau in 2013. For the past several years, she has worked as an investigative reporter exposing corruption in suburban politics, covering sometimes ghastly criminal court cases and following the people’s money and how its spent. In addition to being a dogged news hound, she enjoys reading and writing about travel, animals, Irish whiskey and aviation. E-mail tips to dehuffj@phillynews.com
 Follow Jenny on Twitter.

Sean Collins Walsh is from Bucks County and went to Northwestern University. He joined the Daily News copy desk in 2012 and now covers the Nutter administration. Before that, he interned at papers including The New York Times, The Dallas Morning News and The Seattle Times. E-mail tips to walshSE@phillynews.com
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