Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Where was Johnson after water main break? Administration says invite came late

During the summer we like to stay on top of what your City Council members are up to.

Where was Johnson after water main break? Administration says invite came late

During the summer we like to stay on top of what your City Council members are up to.

And so when Mayor Nutter held a news conference the day after a massive water main break in Southwest Center City nearly two weeks ago, we wondered why City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson was not there beside him.

Getting a response from Johnson’s office turned out to be more of a headache than what it was worth.

Johnson did not speak to us directly, but his office issued this statement: “Upon arrival back to Philadelphia I convened my staff to formulate a strategy to communicate directly with the affected residents. I circulated a community alert, which went out door to door to residents in the area.”

His staff said the Councilman was out of town for a family matter, but no details were disclosed regarding his return.

We then asked the administration what happened.

“There was a miscommunication in our office and the Councilman was invited late to the press conference on July 23rd. However, he was invited,” said Katie Martin, Nutter’s deputy press secretary.

Seems simple enough so why the hassle? We’re still not sure.

Earlier this week, Johnson hosted a walking tour with Nutter and Water Commissioner Howard Neukrug to speak to impacted residents.

“The bottom line is we are addressing the needs and concerns of our constituency,” Johnson said.

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
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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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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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