Broad Street Brief: Upcoming Committee Hearings, Election Update

April 20, 2023

City Hall

Upcoming Committee Hearings

Philadelphia City Council holds several public hearings throughout the legislative calendar. You can watch the hearings here.

  • The Committee on the Environment will be holding a public hearing on Monday, April 24 at 10 a.m. to discuss revising the compensation for members of the Environmental Justice Advisory Commission.
  • The Committee on Housing, Neighborhood Development & the Homeless will be holding a public hearing on Monday, April 24 at 1 p.m. to discuss potential updates to the “Preservation of Affordable Housing” chapter of the Philadelphia Code.

Upcoming Budget Hearings

The full schedule of FY24 budget hearings and a link to watch them can be found here.

  • Register of Wills, City Controller, City Commissioners (Tuesday, April 25 at 10 a.m.)
  • SEPTA, Water Department, Defender’s Association (Tuesday, April 25 at 1:30 p.m.)
  • Department callbacks (Wednesday, April 26 at 10 a.m.)
  • Public testimony (Wednesday, April 26 at 1:30 p.m.)

Election Update

Five Top Democratic Mayoral Contenders Continue to Jockey for Lead

Philadelphia’s highly anticipated mayoral primary election is officially less than a month away, and with the recent withdrawals of former District 7 Councilmember Maria Quiñones Sánchez and former Councilmember At-Large Derek Green from the race, the field has narrowed to five candidates that have the clearest, albeit fairly distinct, paths to victory. Blocs whose rates of voter turnout could end up determining the winner include moderates and conservatives in the Northeast, liberals in Center City and Northwest Philadelphia, and Black voters and progressives across the city.

Certain members of City Council have also begun to voice their support for their mayoral candidates of choice. City Council President Darrell Clarke has thrown his weight behind former council colleague Cherelle Parker, while District 3 Councilmember Jamie Gauthier has endorsed fellow progressive Helen Gym.

Of course, the pressure to stand out in a crowded primary means that the candidates are utilizing every opportunity in the final stretch to promote their policy platforms on issues ranging from supervised-injection sites, the new curfew for teens at the Fashion District, and the fate of current Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw in their administrations.

Poll Shows 42% of Black Voters Still Undecided on Mayoral Race

With less than a month until the Democratic primary, a new poll commissioned by Black Leadership PAC shows that a large number of Black voters are still undecided on the mayor’s race. With Black voters constituting a plurality of the city’s population, it is still unclear if there is a frontrunner in the race.

Former Councilmember Gym Unveils Safety Plan

Former Councilmember At-Large Helen Gym is the latest mayoral candidate to unveil her plan to improve public safety, which is centered around a “holistic, justice-driven strategy” that includes an employment guarantee for adults under 30 and the declaration of a gun violence state of emergency. Critics have voiced concern about the unclear source or sources of funding for programs outlined in the proposed plan.

Meet the Candidates: Allan Domb

The Philadelphia Inquirer has published the sixth installment in its ongoing series of candidate profiles leading up to the May primary. This profile focuses on former City Councilmember At-Large Allan Domb and the aspects of his entrepreneurial background he hopes to bring to the city’s highest office.

Around Town

Governor Shapiro Visits Kensington to Announce Statewide Effort to Combat “Tranq”

Yesterday afternoon, Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro announced that the state will classify animal sedative xylazine — colloquially referred to as “tranq” — as a schedule III drug in an attempt to stem its pervasiveness. The announcement was made in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia, which is widely considered to be the regional epicenter of the opioid epidemic.

Members of Land-Use Boards Largely White Male Homeowners, Study Finds

According to survey data analyzed in a report released last week by the Urban Institute, white male homeowners tend to be overrepresented on land-use boards in and around Philadelphia, which has the potential to impact critical housing and zoning policy decisions that affect far more people than represented by this narrow demographic.

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