Tuesday, July 7, 2015

POSTED: Tuesday, May 12, 2015, 12:22 PM
Philadelphia City Council President Darrell Clarke on last day of council before holiday break. Photograph taken on Thursday, December 11, 2014. ( ALEJANDRO A. ALVAREZ / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER ) (DN)

Remember that time that Council President Darrell L. Clarke was teasing everyone about running for mayor and holding fundraisers all over town and in New York?

Well, Clarke's PAC accrued a half-million dollar war chest this past winter. But the Council President then decided he would not run for mayor.

Clarke recently flung the money chest open. He is helping out his Council colleagues who face a tough fight at the polls next week, as well as one Council newcomer running unopposed.

POSTED: Friday, May 8, 2015, 6:58 PM
Mayoral candidate State Sen. Anthony H. Williams (left) with nonprofit education executive Nina Weisbord and financial trader Joel Greenberg in 2009. Greenberg is one of three backers of the political action committee American Cities. File Photograph

If Friday's campaign finance reports were ranked by sheer size, then we have a winner in American Cities, an independent expenditure political action committee funded by three Main Line stock traders who support state Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams for mayor.

American Cities reported raising $6,830,000 from Jan. 1 to Monday, according to a report filed today.  Of that, $6,651,000 -- or 97.4 percent -- came from Joel Greenberg, Jeff Yass and Arthur Dantchik, the founders of Susquehanna International Group.

That sort of spending was remarkable compared to the money raised by the six Democrats running for mayor in the May 19 primary and independent PACs supporting former City Councilman Jim Kenney.  By comparison, Building a Better PA Fund, which is running pro-Kenney television ads, raised just under $1.5 million in 2015.

POSTED: Friday, May 8, 2015, 5:26 PM
Jim Kenney listens, with Anthony Hardy Williams at left, during the Democratic mayoral candidates debate at Temple University. ( TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer )

Building a Better PA Fund, an independent expenditure political action committee running television ads in support of Former City Councilman Jim Kenney's bid for mayor, raised almost $1.5 million in 2015, according to a campaign finance report filed Friday

The report had one big surprise:  Half the money raised -- $725,000 -- came from the Carpenters Fund for Growth and Progress, which shares an address in Edison, N.J. with at least four carpenter local unions and a pension fund.

Union carpenters in Philadelphia are backing state Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams against Kenney in the May 19 Democratic primary election.  Different sides of the Delaware River, different candidates for mayor of Philadelphia.

POSTED: Thursday, May 7, 2015, 6:00 PM
Nelson Diaz speaks at The Next Mayor debate at Temple University in Philadelphia on Monday, May 4, 2015. ( STEPHANIE AARONSON / Staff Photographer )

Mayoral candidate Nelson A. Diaz raised $394,093 in the past four months, his latest campaign finance report shows.

That amount, however, includes a $125,000 loan Diaz made to himself and remains unpaid, a sign that the former Common Pleas Court Judge might not have much spending power during the last two weeks of the race.

His ending balance on May 4 was $135,376.

POSTED: Wednesday, May 6, 2015, 1:32 PM
State Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams speaks to the media on May 6, 2015. ( Michael Bryant / Staff Photographer )

Mayor Nutter left little room for doubt about his support for Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey, a day after state Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams said Ramsey should be out of a job for overseeing his department's stop-and-frisk policy.

Nutter, speaking at a memorial for fallen police officers and firefighters Wednesday afternoon, responded this way:

"Anyone who is not smart enough to ask him to stay is probably not smart enough to lead the city."

POSTED: Wednesday, May 6, 2015, 10:13 AM
Nelson Diaz speaks at The Next Mayor debate at Temple University in Philadelphia on Monday, May 4, 2015. ( STEPHANIE AARONSON / Staff Photographer )

With 13 days until the election, more political ads are hitting the airwaves.

Nelson Diaz became one of the last mayoral candidates to air an ad, which his campaign described as a “six-figure buy” running on city broadcast stations through Election Day.

POSTED: Tuesday, May 5, 2015, 7:10 PM
Allan Domb

Real estate developer Allan Domb doubled the contribution limits in the Council at-large race by contributing at least $250,000 of his own money or assets to his campaign.

The Board of Ethics released an advisory noting that contribution limits for all at-large candidates are now doubled.

Effective May 1, the new contributions permitted are $5,800 for individuals and $23,000 for political committees an unincorporated business organizations.

POSTED: Tuesday, May 5, 2015, 1:43 PM

Real estate tax collection has declined in Philadelphia for the second year in a row, starving the school district of at least $12 million.

As of March 31, the end of the third quarter, the city had collected $1.09 billion in property taxes. That’s a decline of $21 million from 2013 year-to-date collection of $1.11 billion, City Controller Alan Butkovitz said Monday.

The controller said that he didn’t know why there would be a further drop in tax collection again this year.

About this blog

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

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