Broad Street Brief: PPD to Ramp Up Drug Law Enforcement in Kensington

February 15, 2024

City Hall

Parker Administration Splits Licenses, Inspections; Considers Bringing City Workers Back into the Office

Following the Parker Administration’s decision to split the Streets and Sanitation Department, the mayor also separated the Licenses and Inspections Department. The administration is also considering instituting an in-office work mandate for City employees as remote work in the Philadelphia metro area declines.

City Wins $1.47M Federal Grant for EV Workforce Development Program

The City received $1.47 million in federal funds for its Plug In Philly initiative aimed at training 45 diverse Philadelphians for electric vehicle supply and equipment careers. Supported by partnerships with organizations like IBEW Local 98, the program is focused on bolstering America’s electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure.

City Council Likely to Reconvene Philadelphia Tax Reform Commission

City Council President Kenyatta Johnson (District 2) introduced a resolution to reconvene the Philadelphia Tax Reform Commission, which was initially established in 2003 to propose strategies for lowering taxes in order to grow Philadelphia’s economy. Councilmember Jeffery Young (District 5) also introduced legislation that would impose additional Economic Opportunity Plans criteria for large-scale developments.

Council President Johnson Urges Harrisburg to Increase Minimum Wage

In an opinion piece published by City & State Pennsylvania, City Council President Johnson argues why state legislators should raise Pennsylvania’s minimum wage after 25 years of stagnation.

Upcoming Committee Hearings

Philadelphia City Council holds several public hearings throughout the legislative calendar year. Watch here.

  • A Committee on Public Safety hearing on Tuesday, February 20 at 1 p.m. will include testimony regarding a proposed amendment to the City’s prohibition on certain gambling machines and skills games.
  • A Committee on Education hearing on Wednesday, February 21 at 10 a.m. will include discussion about providing counseling for students and their families who are considering licensing publicity rights and the practice and impact of “leveling” on students and teachers.

Around Town

Crackdown on Drug Offenses in Kensington May Start as Early as April

As Police Commissioner Kevin Bethel ramps up enforcement of drug laws in Kensington, the Philadelphia Police Department (PPD) will begin to inform individuals through community outreach ahead of an anticipated crackdown in April. The goal is to address the neighborhood’s rampant open-air drug market and associated issues.

Updated SEPTA Wayfinding Signage Installed at 30th Street

New signage for SEPTA’s updated wayfinding system — aimed at simplifying navigation and improving clarity and visibility — debuted earlier than expected at Drexel Station at 30th Street.

As Eakins Oval Redesign Moves Forward, City Considers Further Parkway Improvements

The City is considering a major overhaul of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, potentially converting the area into a park and making broader improvements to create a more inviting public space. Initial grant-funded work on Eakins Oval is underway, with plans for further redesign to be announced soon.

School Education Application Deadline Extended

The deadline to apply for a position on the Board of Education has been extended to February 23. The board is responsible for managing a $4.5 billion budget and determining the future of approximately 200,000 students in the Philadelphia School District and city charters.

Abandoned Vehicle Complaints Topped Philly311 2023 Service Requests

Abandoned vehicle complaints surged in 2023, topping all Philly311 service requests, which addresses residents’ non-emergency inquiries.

Boathouse Row to Be Re-Lit in March

Boathouse Row’s new LED light system, capable of 16 million color combinations and various effects, will be unveiled during a public relighting event next month following a $2.1 million replacement project.

Suburban Spotlight

Democrat Wins Special State House Election in Bucks County

Democrat Jim Prokopiak was elected to the state House Tuesday following a special election in Bucks County, a closely monitored Philadelphia suburb that may serve as a bellwether for the 2024 presidential election.


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