Broad Street Brief: Major Changes to the Zoning Board of Adjustment Approved by Council Committee

December 9, 2021

City Hall

Major Changes to the Zoning Board of Adjustment Approved by Council Committee

On Tuesday, the Committee on Law and Government unanimously approved a measure that would allow Philadelphia voters to decide if the Zoning Board of Adjustment’s composition and procedures should change. The proposed changes would significantly change how the ZBA operates, and may ultimately impact the way building development proceeds in the city. Read Public Strategies’ policy alert for more information on these proposed changes.

Council President Clarke Introduces Bill to Change Ethics Rules

At last week’s City Council meeting, Council President Clarke introduced legislation that would change the ethics rules for Councilmembers. In the proposal, Councilmembers would be required to disclose any potential conflicts of interest regarding a bill or resolution within five days of its introduction. If a conflict is not reported in that timeframe and it becomes known to Council, the impacted Councilmember will be notified in writing and will have an opportunity to address it. A final vote on this proposal  is not expected until 2022.

Deputy Mayor Announces Departure From Kenney Administration

On Tuesday, Deputy Mayor for Children and Families Cynthia Figueroa announced that she will become the CEO and President of JEVS Human Services in February 2022. Her announced departure follows former Commerce Director Michael Rashid submitting his resignation to Mayor Kenney on Sunday.

Councilmember Green Introduces Legislation to Establish a Philadelphia Public Financial Authority

On Thursday, Councilmember Green introduced legislation that would enable the city to begin establishing and creating a municipal public bank. A committee hearing is scheduled for December 13. If this measure were to become law, Philadelphia would have the first municipal bank in the nation.

Compromise “Streeteries” Bill Receives Final Approval from City Council

After extensive deliberations among stakeholders, City Council passed a bill that would allow streeteries to permanently remain in certain designated areas of the city. If a restaurant is not located within a designated area, it will have to seek approval from the administration and district Councilmember through an ordinance.

City Council Passes Councilmember Gilmore Richardson’s Bill That Aims to Prevent Tangled Titles

City Council passed legislation that would require funeral homes to provide clients with an informational sheet about tangled titles. The city has over 10,000 tangled titles, and the majority of them are caused by property heirs not acting after a property owner passes away.

New Council Resolution Calls on Kenney Administration to Include Academics in Gun Violence Prevention Work

Councilmember Domb authored a resolution that calls on the Kenney Administration to include academic experts in the evaluation of the city’s anti-violence initiatives.

Weekly City Council Hearing Roundup

The last City Council meeting of 2021 will be next Thursday. City Council will be in recess until the middle of January. In the meantime, City Council will hold several hearings.

  • Monday, December 13 at 10:00am: The Committee on Finance will hold a hearing on potentially establishing a Philadelphia Public Financial Authority.
  • Tuesday, December 14 at 2:00pm: The Committee on Children and Youth will hold a hearing on out-of-school time programs.
  • Wednesday, December 15 at 9:00am: The Committee on Education will examine the School District’s proposed admission process for criteria-based schools.
  • Wednesday, December 15 at 2:00pm: The Committee on Children and Youth and the Committee on Finance will hold a joint hearing regarding a plan to fund the remediation of public school buildings.


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