Broad Street Brief: Newest Campaign Finance Filings Releases; Inquirer Endorses Rhynhart While State Legislators Back Parker
April 7, 2023
April 7, 2023
Budget hearings continued this week, with officials from the Streets Department addressing ways to combat illegal dumping and continue to improve trash collection — the current on-time collection rate is at a 15-year high of 97% — on Monday, and officials from the District Attorney’s Office, including DA Larry Krasner himself, discussing the pertinent issue of crime on Tuesday, with a notable exchange on the recent rise in retail theft. DA Krasner requested an additional $7 million to address council’s concerns about increased shoplifting and carjacking incidents.
Last week, City Council passed a resolution asking the state legislature to suspend its gun law preemption to allow for Philadelphia and other cities across the commonwealth to implement and enforce its own gun laws. While City Council has successfully passed “common sense” gun laws in the past, the state’s Uniform Firearms Act prevents the city from enforcing them.
On Tuesday, Mayor Jim Kenney announced the departure of Budget Director Marisa Waxman, who has served in Philadelphia city government for more than two decades and will be bringing her talents to the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Current Office of the Director of Finance Chief of Staff Sabrina Maynard will be stepping up to serve as budget director beginning April 17.
The full schedule of FY24 budget hearings and a link to watch them can be found here.
While polling for local, off-season elections can be a bit dubious, fundraising numbers can often shed some degree of light on candidates’ standings in the race, and cash on hand can serve as a predictor of sorts for how the remainder of the campaign may play out. According to the most recent campaign finance reports, five candidates — Jeff Brown, Allan Domb, Helen Gym, Cherelle Parker, and Rebecca Rhynhart — have each raised more than $1 million since the beginning of the race, with Brown having broken the $2 million barrier. Three of these candidates — Brown, Gym, and Parker — have benefitted from super PAC money, with yet another super PAC expected to back Rhynhart soon. Domb and Gym lead the pack in terms of cash on hand as the only two candidates with more than $1 million in the bank.
Over the weekend, the Editorial Board of the Philadelphia Inquirer published its endorsement of former City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart among her Democratic competitors. While the Inquirer’s primary endorsements are typically published closer to the date of the election, the combination of a more crowded than usual field and the increased prevalence of mail-in voting may account for their decision to publish their endorsement more than a month out.
With only 40 days left until Philadelphia’s primary election, many of the city’s publications of record — including the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Philadelphia Citizen, and Philadelphia Magazine — have begun to publish voter guides to help voters make informed decisions in one of the most crowded fields in recent memory.
The Philadelphia Inquirer has published the third installment in its series of candidate profiles leading up to the May primary, this time highlighting longtime Philadelphia public servant Cherelle Parker, who has recently picked up a number of endorsements from some of Philadelphia’s most prominent Democratic party officials, including one from U.S. Representative Dwight Evans earlier this week and State Senator Vincent Hughes over the weekend.
The mayoral candidates have been hard at work promoting their respective campaign platforms in recent weeks through a flurry of candidate forums addressing topics ranging from arts and culture to gun violence and public health to mobility and transit. Local media has also been closely tracking candidates’ stances — such as the proposal to construct a new Sixers arena in the Market East neighborhood of Center City — and voter priorities on topics like student safety, teacher quality, and curriculum.
The city is racing to respond to nearly 17,000 property assessment appeals before residents’ tax bills come due on Friday.
On Monday, the city resumed its street sweeping program, with efforts focused on 14 residential areas where litter is the most prevalent. The streets will be swept on a weekly basis through November.
The Delaware County Rental Housing Coalition was launched recently with the goal of increasing access to rental housing for low- and moderate-income households by convening stakeholders to address current gaps in communication that exist across the housing sector.
Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies, an affiliate of the international law firm Cozen O’Connor, is a bipartisan government relations practice representing clients before the federal government and in cities and states throughout the country. With offices in Washington D.C., Richmond, Albany, New York City, Philadelphia, Harrisburg, Chicago, and Santa Monica, the firm’s public strategies professionals offer a full complement of government affairs services, including legislative and executive branch advocacy, policy analysis, assistance with government procurement and funding programs, and crisis management. Its client base spans multiple industries, including healthcare, transportation, hospitality, education, construction, energy, real estate, entertainment, financial services, and insurance.
Established in 1970, Cozen O’Connor has over 775 attorneys who help clients manage risk and make better business decisions. The firm counsels clients on their most sophisticated legal matters in all areas of the law, including litigation, corporate, and regulatory law. Representing a broad array of leading global corporations and middle-market companies, Cozen O’Connor serves its clients’ needs through 31 offices across two continents.
November 28, 2023
November 28, 2023