Philadelphia tax abatement reform clears first hurdle in City Council

Philadelphia tax abatement reform clears first hurdle in City Council

A bill to phase out Philadelphia’s controversial property tax abatement advanced out of City Council’s Committee of the Whole Tuesday, following a lengthy afternoon hearing and a unanimous vote.
 
The legislation would reduce the amount new residential property owners can avoid in taxes over the next ten years. The incentive to build new properties has been in effect for about 20 years and led to population growth, renaissances in some neighborhoods, and a boost in property values in most sections of the city.
Wednesday, December 4, 2019/Author: Marco Cerino
Categories: Philadelphia
Sen. Hughes continues to seek funds for school repairs

Sen. Hughes continues to seek funds for school repairs

As the Philadelphia School District plans to commit $500 million towards removing asbestos and other repairs in buildings districtwide, they’ve received promises of additional support from a rapper with connections and a legislator with plans.
 
Sen. Vincent Hughes (D-Philadelphia) introduced two spending bills in June to offer emergency funding to school district looking to repair buildings. Recently, he’s mentioned plans to reintroduce Senate Bill 1276 from last session that created a $6 billion fund for renovations, bankrolled by taxes on shale gas production. 
Monday, December 2, 2019/Author: Marco Cerino
Categories: News and Views
Stein sues DOS over election machines

Stein sues DOS over election machines

Former presidential candidate Dr. Jill Stein filed a motion in federal court Tuesday against the Department of State to decertify voting machines in two Pennsylvania counties.
 
The motion comes as what Stein and her co-defendants consider a violation of the settlement in her Stein v. Cortes case stemming from the 2016 general elections. The decision demanded the state certify new machines in all 67 counties that meet new security criteria.
Tuesday, November 26, 2019/Author: Marco Cerino
Categories: News and Views
Philadelphia heading for second pre-emption battle with General Assembly

Philadelphia heading for second pre-emption battle with General Assembly

City Council passed a bill Thursday banning firearms and other weapons from parks and recreation centers. The action could lead to a second round of pre-emption battles with the state legislature.
 
The ban would appear to run afoul of state laws that prevent municipalities from enacting their own restrictions on gun carrying. One week prior, the council passed a red flag law that would allow firearms to be removed from the possession of those deemed a risk to themselves or others via court order.
Monday, November 25, 2019/Author: Marco Cerino
Categories: Philadelphia
Sec. Richards leaving PennDOT to take GM role at SEPTA

Sec. Richards leaving PennDOT to take GM role at SEPTA

SEPTA announced Thursday that its board unanimously approved Department of Transportation Secretary Leslie Richards as its new general manager. She’ll succeed the outgoing Jeffrey Knueppel, who retires at the end of the year.
 
Richards was appointed for a second term as PennDOT secretary earlier this year. She took the role in 2015 as part of the new Wolf administration. Richards is a Montgomery County resident and earned a Master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania. She previously served on SEPTA’s board earlier in the decade while a county commissioner.
Friday, November 22, 2019/Author: Marco Cerino
Categories: News and Views
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