Council bids adieu to Bill Green

City Council today bid adieu to William Joseph Green IV, two-term, at-large Democratic City Councilman. Green resigned from council this week after taking the oath of office to serve as newly appointed chairman of the School Reform Commission. (He was absent Council to be at his first SRC meeting.) Sentiments from City Council members were a mix of warm regards dappled with a twinge of good riddance. Here’s what a few of his former colleagues had to say.

Council President Darrell Clarke: “He was – some would say – a very interesting council person. He came to this body on fire – taking on the world – and then realized it’s a pretty big world. So, it was a significant challenge and he learned over a period of years his effectiveness would be more enhanced if he took on pieces of the world. One thing I actually liked about Councilman Green is he refused to be pigeon-holed in a particular place. Fortunately for us, or unfortunately, at budget time, we will see him again.”

Judge Kevin Dougherty swears in two new SRC members: Bill Green and Farah Jimenez. Green becomes SRC chairman.

Councilman Jim Kenney: “I want to wish Bill Green, chairman of the SRC, well, along with Farah Jimenez, and the whole body. They’re going to have to do a good job in order for (school funding) to get done and we’re going to have to help them get that job done in Harrisburg. I wish them all well.”

Councilwoman Maria Quinones-Sanchez: “I’ve always appreciated his energy. As someone who debated him – probably the most out of anybody in this room – privately and in our discussions around policy, I really learned to respect his perspective and, actually, I’ve come to count on him. He’s taken on a big challenge as the SRC chair. His selection by the governor and has led to much debate. I want to congratulate him and wish him well.”

Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr.: “This is a voice that will be missed. When we talk about Councilman Green … whether you talk about his work with Maria Quinones-Sanchez on tax policy; whether you talk about his paperless government idea; whether you talk about free Wi-Fi for all; or putting in a lawsuit to keep our libraries open during the dark crisis of our budget situation, this is a man, this is a councilman, who added value to this body. We know he will go on to create great controversy wherever he goes. Speaking for myself in the fourth district, which he also represented, he will be missed.”