Milton wins court ruling, remains in at-large race

After learning that Commonwealth Court yesterday had affirmed his place on the May primary ballot, T. Milton Street said he wants to mount a serious campaign focused on dealing with the epidemic of homicide in the African-American community.

Street, who is running for a Democratic nomination to City Council at-large, was challenged last month by a voter who questioned nominating petitions circulated by Street's son, T. Milton Street Jr. The challenger argued that the younger Street's home address on the nominating petitions was different from his voting address.

But Common Pleas Court last month ruled in the candidate's favor, and Commonwealth Court yesterday affirmed that ruling.

Street, brother of Mayor John Street, is one of 19 candidates competing for five at-large nominations in the May 15 election.

Attorney Jeremy Walker, representing Samuel Harris, who challenged Street's petitions, said Commonwealth Court Judge Rochelle Friedman had failed to follow past Supreme Court rulings.

But he said an appeal to the Supreme Court was unlikely, though he had to sit down with Harris to make a final decision.

"As far as I'm concerned this was a political decision," Walker said of the ruling. "I guess it will be up to the people to decide who they want in City Council."

And that's just fine with Milton Street, who said he hopes to produce a comprehensive plan to reduce violence on city streets within two weeks.

He said he wants to produce a loud call to the African-American community to step forward "and take responsibility for what's happening."

Despite the many vigils and marches by community groups all over the city, Street said that as the number of African-American homicide victims increases, the African-American community has been as "quiet as a mouse tinkling on cotton."

Meanwhile, Commonwealth Court also handed down a ruling that affirmed the removal from the ballot of Greg Paulmier, the Germantown ward leader who was challenging incumbent Councilwoman Donna Miller for the third time.

Paulmier said he will confer with his attorney before deciding whether to appeal the case to the Supreme Court. *