Archive: March, 2012
Does the Police Advisory Commission lack teeth? The DN looks at how to beef up the powers of the oversight group.
Was a whistle-blower forced out at the PAC?
John Baer asks why Harrisburg lawmakers won't take action against a Philly judge who was running a real estate business out of his chambers.
Gov. Corbett and Harrisburg Republicans are thisclose to putting a law on the books that will require voters to have state-approved ID before they can cast a ballot.
Mayor Nutter and the city's blue-collar workers have about as much love for each other as the Capulets and the Montagues.
Will City Council go along with Nutter's plan to set a new property-tax-revenue goal before citywide assesments are finished in the fall?
Here at PhillyClout, we've covered all of Mayor Nutter's budget plans (please hold your applause). And over the years we’ve noticed a funny pattern: Council will never exactly give Nutter what he asks for.
So in 2009, Nutter wanted a property tax hike. Council raised revenue with a sales tax hike and pension fund deferrals. In 2010, he asked for a soda tax, they gave him a property tax hike. Last year, to help the schools, Nutter asked for a soda tax, or a property tax hike. Council did a property tax bump, but at a lower level than Nutter wanted.
We put it to the Mayor today: since he wants to get more property tax revenue this year, might Council instead enact a soda tax?
District Council 33 president Pete Mathews, who heads the city's largest municipal union, accused Mayor Nutter today of seeking to break the union as some sort of "legacy" for his two terms in City Hall.
"Definitely I see it in every speech the mayor makes: He wants to break the union," Matthews said after Nutter's budget address to City Council. "He's on a cause. I call it a legacy cause. He said he has his pen in hand. Well, if the pen is concessions, he can keep it in this pocket."
Matthews said his members, many of whom booed and jeered Nutter during his speech, have not had any increases in health and welfare funding for four years, saving the city millions. He conceded that his members are better off working under the terms of their expired contract than meeting Nutter's terms.
Here's the video:
Here's the full text of the Mayor's budget address:
2012 BUDGET ADDRESS
MAYOR MICHAEL A. NUTTER
A local Applebee's is going to host a gathering of open-carry enthusiasts.
A state lawmaker wants to cut funding for a database that gun dealers use to check buyers' criminal records.
Seriously, guys, it's not a backdoor tax hike. Unless it kind of is.
So Mayor Nutter today unveils his budget for the 2013 fiscal year. We’ve already started explaining the property value piece of the budget, but here are a few more highlights from $3.6 billion plan:
- Cuts - $2.2 million. These are minimal. The bulk of this comes from some cost-saving contract changes at the Office of Information Technology and the money saved by the Streets Department because the city didn’t need to buy salt for snow removal this year.
- New Operating Spending – New investments include $4 Million for the Police Department for new hires, $1 million to the Office of Property Assessment to finish reassessments and $1 million for anti-violence programs.
- New Capital Projects – Nutter has $117 million in projects, funded through bond borrowing, which include $6.7 million in renovations to police stations and fire houses, a $20 million overhaul of LOVE Park and $18 million for street repaving.
- New Police HQ coming – The other interesting thing to come out of this budget is that the administration plans to ask the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority to provide them with $9 million to do the “initial design work” for a new police headquarters located at 4601 Market St. The year-long study will look at the costs of moving police and the morgue to that location.