Friday, February 27, 2015

City Hall will be open...eventually

It turns out that Mayor Nutter's promise of an "open and transparent" City Hall comes with a few disclaimers. Earlier this year, Managing Director Camille Barnett told us that she would be holding regular "PhillyStat" meetings to track the performances of city departments. These sessions, she said, would be open to the public and the press. But apparently, not right away. It turns out that PhillyStat meetings have begun, but the press has yet to receive invitations. Mayoral spokesman Doug Oliver said these aren't official meetings, just "dress rehearsals." He said Barnett is currently holding a round of preliminary meetings with each department, to give heads a feel for the process, before opening them up. "We're still in the planning process of how PhillyStat will work, how 311 will work," Oliver said. "It is our expectation that when PhillyStat meetings officially begin, the meetings will be open to the media and the public." Oliver said that official PhillyStat meetings are tentatively scheduled to begin mid-April. We'll keep you posted...

City Hall will be open...eventually

It turns out that Mayor Nutter's promise of an "open and transparent" City Hall comes with a few disclaimers.

Earlier this year, Managing Director Camille Barnett told us that she would be holding regular "PhillyStat" meetings to track the performances of city departments. These sessions, she said, would be open to the public and the press.

But apparently, not right away. It turns out that PhillyStat meetings have begun, but the press has yet to receive invitations.

Mayoral spokesman Doug Oliver said these aren't official meetings, just "dress rehearsals." He said Barnett is currently holding a round of preliminary meetings with each department, to give heads a feel for the process, before opening them up.

"We're still in the planning process of how PhillyStat will work, how 311 will work," Oliver said. "It is our expectation that when PhillyStat meetings officially begin, the meetings will be open to the media and the public."

Oliver said that official PhillyStat meetings are tentatively scheduled to begin mid-April. We'll keep you posted...

About this blog
William Bender, a Drexel graduate who landed at the Daily News in 2007, has covered everything from South Philly mobsters to doomsday hucksters. He occasionally writes about local food trucks and always eats everything on his plate, whether it be a bloody rib eye or a corrupt politician. E-mail tips to benderw@phillynews.com
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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
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David Gambacorta, has been a reporter with the Daily News since 2005, covering crime, police corruption and all of the other bizarre things that happen in Philadelphia. Now he’s covering the 2015 mayor’s race, because he enjoys a good circus just as much as the next guy. He’s always looking to get a cup of coffee. Send news tips and other musings on life to gambacd@phillynews.com
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