Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Archive: August, 2011

POSTED: Thursday, August 25, 2011, 11:58 AM

After Arlene Ackerman spent two days refuting the mayor's version of her dismissal as schools superintendent in interviews with Education Week, Fox 29 and WURD-FM, Nutter finally gave a rebuttal of sorts this morning.

He said Ackerman's comments were rife with "mischaracterizations" and she was "wrong," but he refused to address many of her specific allegations.

"It’s clear that the former superintendent is on what amounts to a media tour. She has obviously a fair amount of time to talk and run around and do what she’s actively engaged in," Nutter said. "On the other hand, I have a job, a city to run, and I’m very focused on the fact that schools open in less than two weeks."

POSTED: Thursday, August 25, 2011, 6:42 PM

The National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association opened its 21st annual convention Thursday in Philadelphia, bringing more than 350 members to the city.

The convention of the organization, which was founded in 1990, features more than 30 workshops and panel discussions and runs through Sunday at the Loews Hotel, 1200 Market Street, in Center City.

Convention officials said 350 members had registered by Thursday and that more were expected.

POSTED: Wednesday, August 24, 2011, 4:40 PM

Arlene Ackerman, who this week agreed to take $905,000 to walk away from her job as superintendent of Philadelphia schools, spoke today to the national publication Education Week about her ouster.

In the story, she said she "didn't feel good" about Mayor Nutter's ploy to put full-day kindergarten on the chopping block as leverage to get more state and city money to fill a $629 million gap in the district's budget. When she found the money to save full-day kindergarten - and announced the good news with little notice to the mayor - she said she "thought he would be happy ... but he was furious."

Ackerman also said her tenure started unraveling in March when she backed Mosaica Turnaround Partners to operate Martin Luther King High School over a group supported by state Rep. Dwight Evans.

POSTED: Monday, August 22, 2011, 11:29 AM

Mayor Nutter appeared this morning to sign an executive order creating the new position of chief innovation officer and to name Adel Ebeid as the first person to hold that title.

News about the impending appointment broke more than a week ago, and the naming of someone to such a behind-the-scenes position in government usually doesn't generate much media attention.

But, the mayor's reception room was nonetheless packed with television and print reporters this morning, thanks to the breaking news of schools Superintendent Arlene Ackerman's imminent departure.

POSTED: Tuesday, August 16, 2011, 12:34 PM

At the beginning of today's first public hearing on redistricting, Council President Anna C. Verna said a bill to redraw the city's political map would be introduced on Sept. 8 and passed, "if all goes well," on Sept. 22.

The City Charter says Council must pass redistricting before Sept. 9 or the members don't get paid. But because of the biweekly pay schedule, they wouldn't miss a check if they pass redistricting by Sept. 22.

The question is whether the public will get to see the new map (or proposed maps) before Sept. 8 - or before either of the last two public hearings on Aug. 31 and Sept. 6.

POSTED: Tuesday, August 16, 2011, 12:25 PM

A series of AmeriCorps grants for Philadelphia totalling $4.1 million was announced Tuesday by U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah, D., Philadelphia.

Leading the way is the City Year program, with $2.6 million.

See the Fattah press release below.

POSTED: Monday, August 15, 2011, 12:47 PM

Being mayor has its privileges.

Nutter is in Rio de Janiero, Brazil today with EPA chief Lisa Jackson (who used to run New Jersey's environmental agency) to establish the U.S.-Brazil Joint Venture on Urban Sustainability.

They are being joined by private industry, academia, non-profit and other government representatives in the venture, announced in March by President Obama and Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff. The idea is to illustrate the "economic, environmental and health benefits of green cities."

POSTED: Monday, August 15, 2011, 6:40 PM

With a deadline for drawing new City Council districts about a month away, Council holds its first public hearing on the issue Tuesday, beginning at 10:30 a.m. in City Council chambers.  Suzanne Biemiller, the mayor’s chief of staff, is the leadoff speaker, followed by six individual and groups with different perspectives on what Council should do.

A coalition of Hispanic organizations called Latino Lines is pushing for Council to strengthen the concentration of Latino voters in the 7th Council district, where Democrat Maria Quinones Sanchez is the incumbent. The district is already nearly 50 percent Hispanic, despite irregular boundaries that extend nearly nine miles from Kensington to Rhawnhurst.

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The Philadelphia Inquirer's Chris Hepp, Tricia Nadolny, Julia Terruso, and Claudia Vargas take you inside Philadelphia's City Hall.

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