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Archive: April, 2011

POSTED: Friday, April 29, 2011, 5:38 PM

The suspense is over and the 2011 primary ballot is official:

City Councilmembers Frank Rizzo and Marian Tasco, and City Commissioner Marge Tartaglione are all within their legal rights to seek re-election - in spite of their participation in the city's controversial DROP pension program.

Just after 5 p.m., the Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued a one-page opinion affirming the ruling of  Common Pleas Court Judge James M. Lynn that the three elected officials can run for for office.

POSTED: Monday, April 25, 2011, 5:35 PM

Mayor Nutter, looking to help elect a City Council he can work with, is expected to endorse Councilwoman Maria Quinones Sanchez Monday evening.

Incumbent Sanchez, in a rematch with former Councilman Danny Savage, will also be endorsed by U.S Rep. Chaka Fattah and state Rep. Dwight Evans at the Bethel Temple Community Bible Church in North Philadelphia.

That puts the city's African-American political leadership squarely behind Sanchez in the Seventh District, which stretches from North Philadelphia and Kensington to Rhawnhurst in the Northeast.

POSTED: Monday, April 25, 2011, 4:51 PM

It would not be Spring without the blooming of the political attack ad/flyer/blog-post, and the May 17 primary for City Council in Philadelphia promises a fruitful season.

In the heretofore genteel contest for First District, where four candidates are looking to replace retiring Councilman Frank DiCicco, Vern Anastasio's supporters have taken aim at Mark Squilla, who has received much of the establishment support in the race.

"Stop the Machine!! Stop Corruption NOW!" read a posting on Anastasio's Facebook page earlier this month. Anastasio says it did not come from him and he did not support. Anastasio removed it.

POSTED: Monday, April 25, 2011, 4:25 PM

The two-way primary race for council in the Sixth District has been heating up in the past week or so, with lots of back-and-forth on the issue of DROP, the pension program for city workers that many voters believe elected officials have abused.

Here's Sunday's Heard in the Hall column, with much of the background.

http://www.philly.com/philly/news/politics/city/20110424_Nutter_s_Council_choices_say_there_s_no_Tasco_deal.html

POSTED: Friday, April 22, 2011, 4:54 PM

And now we bring to you yet another candidate for Mayor of Philadelphia.

Juan Rodriguez was not happy last month when he was knocked off the Democratic ballot for the Seventh Councilmanic seat. Now he's back, and running as a write-in for mayor in the May 17 primary.

Promising to build recreation centers, clean out abandoned properties and build affordable housing, Rodriguez will announce his candidacy "to the community" at the corner of Lawrence & Lehigh in North Philadelphia at Noon on Saturday.

POSTED: Thursday, April 21, 2011, 3:46 PM

Well, here it is. The first official anonymous and venomous flyer of the 2011 campaign season.

Or the first one to reach us, anyway.

"The one thing I know about this flyer is I had nothing to do with it. If I had time to find out what moron did, I would," said Barbara Capozzi, one of four candidates vying for the 2nd District City Council seat being vacated by retiring Council President Anna C. Verna.

POSTED: Tuesday, April 19, 2011, 11:43 AM

City Controller Alan Butkovitz unveiled a first-of-its-kind iphone application today that allows citizens to report waste and fraud in city government directly to the controller's office.

The app includes an option to shoot and upload videos and photos, a GPS function to instantly pinpoint the location of an incident and an option to report anonymously.

The app is available to be downloaded by searching "Philly Watchdog" on iphones and ipads, and through itunes on your computer. The app, which the controller's office developed for $5,400, is free.

POSTED: Monday, April 18, 2011, 12:19 PM

Mayor Nutter has named a new director for the office that handles services for ex-offenders. Here's the news release:

Mayor Michael A. Nutter has appointed William E. Hart as executive director of the Mayor’s Office of Re-integration Services for Ex-offenders (RISE). In his position, Mr. Hart will be responsible for developing and managing strategy, implementation, and day-to-day operations of all services and activities at RISE.

“I am delighted to announce that Bill Hart will be joining the Administration as the new Executive Director of RISE. This critical office provides job skills training and education to people who very much want to enter the productive economy, and I have full confidence in Bill that he will lead an agency that offers a comprehensive system for ex-offenders to re-entry society,” said Mayor Nutter. “I would also like to thank Deputy Mayor Gillison for his dedicated oversight, and Carolyn Harper for her work over the past few months at RISE.”

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