The sugar-sweetened beverage lobby, AKA Big Soda, is stepping up the political leverage in City Council to knock down support for Mayor Nutter's 2-cents-per-ounce proposed tax. Big Soda just released a letter to Councilman Curtis Jones Jr. from the Manayunk Development Corporation, signed by 15 local merchants who oppose the tax, which Nutter would use to help close a Philadelphia School District budget deficit.
We expected to see the names of bar, restaurant and market operators but were surprised to see this signature: Monica Mitchell, psychic. Mitchell, who runs a shop on Main Street, told us merchants in all types of businesses oppose the proposed tax. She predicts the effort will fail.
"Nobody cares for it," Mitchell said of the Manayunk merchants. "Nobody is saying that this is the way to solve the problem."
And Mitchell has some experience standing up to the city. The Department of Licenses & Inspections closed down about 16 psychic shops in 2007, citing a state law that it claimed prohibited the practice. The city backed down after an attorney for Mitchell went to court, seeking a restraining order.
Here's video of Mitchell in 2007 talking about her work, as part of the First Person Arts Festival.