A poll released this morning by Pew's Philadelphia Research Initiative, shows that the approval rating for the job Mayor Nutter is doing is on the rise, even as city residents express growing concerns about crime and the overall direction of Philadelphia. Some key findings:
- 60 percent say they approve of Nutter's performance while 30 percent disapprove. His approval rating is up from 52 percent last year, 53 percent in 2010 and 47 percent in 2009. A key factor: Nutter's approval rating jumped 10 percent among African-American city residents in the last year, reaching 52 percent in this poll.
- Violent crime is a major concern, with 85 percent saying that should be the top priority for Nutter's second term.
- Education and the economy are also on the minds of city residents, ranking in a virtual tie at 79 percent and 78 percent as the second and third priorities for Nutter's second term.
- A curfew for teenagers enacted last year is very popular but some residents are not sure if it is helping. Eighty-eight percent favor the curfew while 41 percent said it makes some difference in public safety, 27 percent said it makes a great deal of difference and 17 percent said it doesn't make much of a difference.
- Twenty-three percent say Philadelphia is better off than it was five years ago and 35 percent saying things have gotten worse. Last year, 28 percent said the city was better off and 33 percent felt that way in 2009. Looking forward, 39 percent say the city is headed in the right direction while 42 percent say it is headed in the wrong direction.