Monday, September 22, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

POSTED: Thursday, July 10, 2014, 11:44 AM

City officials and developers broke ground today on a vacant lot in North Philadelphia that will be transformed to 10 affordable single family homes and a new city park.

Ingersoll Commons, located at 16th and Master streets, is part of the City's Green 2015 initiative that aims to create new public green space in underserved city neighborhoods.

The 10 homes are being developed by Community Ventures, a nonprofit development group. The energy efficient design includes tankless water heaters and gas-fired furnaces.  Each home will be equipped with 3 bedrooms, 2 ½ bathrooms and a basement.   

POSTED: Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 7:07 PM
The dancers at South Philadelphia’s Cheerleaders Gentlemen’s Club could soon go from scantily clad to scantily bare. (File photo)

The dancers at South Philadelphia’s Cheerleaders Gentlemen’s Club could soon go from scantily clad to scantily bare.

Cheerleaders will join a handful of other clubs in the city designated as adult cabarets and that allow topless dancing. The city Zoning Board of Adjustments unanimously approved Wednesday that the nipple pasties currently used by the female dancers may come off.

G-strings will still be required.

POSTED: Thursday, June 19, 2014, 2:00 PM

Philadelphia City Council passed the city’s operating budget Thursday, at the final meeting before the 12-week summer recess, and also approved a separate bill to immediately borrow the $27 million the School District of Philadelphia needs to finish out the fiscal year.

The $4.5 billion budget includes proceeds from the sale of the Philadelphia Gas Works, but that deal remains in doubt. Council has refused to publicly consider the proposed sale since Mayor Nutter announced earlier this year that UIL Holdings, of Connecticut, had offered $1.86 billion for the city-owned utility.

The gas workers union staged a rally Thursday morning at City Hall, where Former Mayor John F. Street spoke to a crowd of about 100, leading chants of “just say no,” to the sale of PGW. The utility, after years of mismanagement, has turned into a profitable operation in recent years.

POSTED: Wednesday, June 18, 2014, 7:15 PM

Mayor Nutter will be sworn in Thursday as the next president of the Pennsylvania Municipal League.

Nutter, who currently serves as the vice president of the league, will bid adieu to the league’s president Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski at a luncheon during the league’s 115th annual conference business meeting Thursday at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

The four-day conference, which started Tuesday, focuses on “best practices and strategies for creating thriving, sustainable communities,” in the state, according to the league’s news release. The league is a nonprofit and nonpartisan group established more than a century ago to strengthen municipalities across the state.

POSTED: Tuesday, June 17, 2014, 5:10 PM

State Rep. John Taylor (R., Phila) introduced a bill that would eliminate the city’s ability to appeal costly arbitration award by simply saying it can’t afford it.

The bill, introduced Friday and co-sponsored by Philadelphia Democratic state Representatives Ed Neilson and William Keller, proposes to repeal a lengthy provision of the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority Act for Cities of the First Class that addresses arbitration awards for policemen and firefighters.

The section that Taylor is proposing be deleted states that arbitrators must consider the city’s approved financial plan and the city’s ability to pay wage increases or fringe benefits “without adversely affecting levels of service.”

POSTED: Tuesday, June 17, 2014, 1:48 PM

Despite pressure from the Nutter administration, City Council President Darrell L. Clarke said Tuesday that “we don’t anticipate” introducing legislation this week to sell the Philadelphia Gas Works to a private buyer.

The proposed buyer, UIL Holdings Corp. of Connecticut, can opt out of an agreement to purchase the municipally-owned gas company by July 15.

But Clarke called that deadline “artificial.”

POSTED: Monday, June 16, 2014, 2:30 PM
Cranford Coulter serving his homemade soup on the Parkway during Thursday night's snowstorm. "It could be a monsoon," said one of the homeless he serves, "and he would be here." (ELIZABETH ROBERTSON / Staff Photographer)

The Montgomery County man who has been feeding Philadelphia's homeless for a quarter-century against all odds, including facing eviction from his home, is continuing to attract fans and funds.

After we told you the story of Cranford Coulter, who founded and runs the King's Jubilee ministry out of the Souderton home he was about to lose, donations poured in from around the world. With $45,000 in donations, Coulter was able to pay off the debt and interests that put his home on the February sheriff’s sale and continue to make timely mortgage payments. He also helped two families going through tough times.

On Monday, Coulter said he had just exhausted the influx of money he received this winter. But help keeps coming in and he keeps churning out those weekly meals.

POSTED: Thursday, June 12, 2014, 12:24 PM

AFSCME District Council 33 President Pete Matthews asked City Council Thursday not to pass a budget until Mayor Nutter comes to an agreement with the city's blue collar workers, who have not had a new contract for five years.

"We can do this deal," Matthews said, during Council's caucus gathering before the regular Thursday meeting. "We don't want to go to the next mayor."

Matthews said he was willing to negotiate on the pension plan, but not furloughs and overtime. He called furloughs "totally unnecessary," because of the city's improved finances. He also doesn't want to restrict overtime for his members and said that the administration has the authority to sign or not sign overtime slips.

About this blog

The Philadelphia Inquirer's Troy Graham and Claudia Vargas take you inside Philadelphia's City Hall.

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