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JUNE 3, 2015
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84th84thRITTEN HOUSE SQUARE
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TAXING PROPOSAL: Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter wants to raise taxes to help pay for schools and his administration recently introduced a new website that shows residents how much their property taxes will go up and what theyll pay for.
left to right: Marciene Mattleman receives citation for public service from Mayor Nutter. Photo: N.C.
New website shows howPhilly taxes will be used tofund schoolsBy Evan GrossmanWatchdog.org
A new website is bringing increased transparency to Philadelphias school fund-ing issue during a critical time for the cash-strapped school district.
Mayor Michael Nutter wants to raise taxes to pay for $105 million in new, recurring funding for the School District of Philadelphia. And so there are no surprises for residents whose property taxes are expected to spike more than 9 percent in 2016, the city launched
an interactive website that tracks how much their taxes will jump, and how that money will be spent to fund schools.
I want to encourage every Philadelphian to log on and see how the proposed tax increase will a ect them and how the district proposes to use those funds, Nut-ter said.
The website breaks down expected annual property tax in-creases down to the month, week and day for residents, based on their address. The site also fore-casts which local schools their
extra taxes will directly fund and how that money will be spent on teachers, support sta and equip-ment and supplies.
Philadelphia schools are poorly supplied, with many classrooms
without educational necessities like certain books. Other schools are short on basic supplies like pa-per, toilet paper and paper towels.
While several polls have shown
Philadelphia honorsone of its heroines:Marciene MattlemanBy Nicole ContostaSta Reporter
At 85-years-old, Dr. Marciene S. Mattleman recently an-nounced her retirement as the chair of After School Activities Partnership (ASAP).
But the idea thats she some-how in retirement, I actually just dont believe it, said Mayor Michael Nutter moments before handing Mattleman a citation at a standing-room tribute ceremony Wednesday, May 27th.
Nutters joke speaks volumes to Mattlemans fty years of public service towards literacy and edu-cation.
Marciene Mattleman, who be-gan her career as a sixth grade teacher, later earning her Ph.D in education at Temple University, founded the Mayors Commission for Literacy, Youth Education for
Tomorrow, Philadelphia Reads, Philadelphia Futures and ASAP.
Marciene has started more public service organizations in this city than any other person in the citys history, Nutter emphasized.
But it isnt just Mattlemans boundless energy that endears her to friends and colleagues.
No one has ever done more for the city and no one ever will, said former Governor and Mayor Ed Rendell. The secret of her success is that shes impossible, Rendell continued of her unmitigated resolve in having her programs implemented. When rst meeting her, Rendell relayed that although he thought her programs were great, he had to say no, because the city didnt have any money.
Though the word no did not deter Mattleman.
So eventually, I came to the
Grand Juryapproves charges againstSchool DistrictEmployee For Steering $900,000 in contracts to her friends and family Philadelphia District Attorney makes arrest and is proceeding with prosecution Philadelphia District Attor-ney R. Seth Williams today announced that a grand jury has recommended charg-ing Priscilla Wright with Con ict of Interest and Perjury for using her position at the School District of Philadelphia (SDP) to steer a $900,000 contract to her friends and family.
In March of 2013, the SDP was in the process of closing 23 schools
CRIME/POLITICS ........................3ALMANAC ...............................26CLASSIFIEDS............................27
Soprano Jennifer Hsiung is guest solo-ist in Praise!, along with four choirs, the mighty Cooper Memorial Organ and a brass ensemble in a June 10 program in Verizon Hall, an inter-faith celebrati on of the choral spirit.
The Usable Earth, a group exhibiti on exploring the role of ecology in society, will open at the Univer-sity City Science Centers Esther Klein Gallery (EKG) on June 12, 2015 and run through July 24th. The exhibit focuses on the multi -faceted relati onship between humans and the earth. EKG is located at 3600 Market St in Phila-delphia.
THE USABLE EARTH
NOTES ON MUSIC
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2 PHILADELPHIA FREE PRESS UC REVIEW JUNE 3, 2015
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that education remains paramount to city residents, the idea of paying higher taxes has not been well re-
ceived. The City Council is ultimately responsible for approving or rejecting Nut-ters proposed budget, and early indications are that it will not pass.
I think thats not the
right way to go, Council-man Mark Squilla said.
The idea of raising taxes in a city with almost 85 per-cent of residents economi-cally challenged and on the heels of another property tax increase less than a year ago will be a tough sell.
We have an obligation to provide Philadelphias children with a high-quality education that prepares them for college and ca-reer, Nutter said. Our kids deserve a fair chance at a successful future, but they wont get it with insu cient school funding.
In addition to proposed funding from the city, the district is also hopeful that another $150 million Gov. Tom Wolf promised in his state budget proposal is approved by Harrisburg. Philadelphia schools stand to gain an additional $264.7 million, on top of the $2.2 billion they already receive from state and local taxpay-ers, if both Wolf and Nut-ters budgets are approved later this year.
Without additional sup-port, the district faces an $80 million de cit.
While those extra funding streams are not guaranteed, the districts budget for next year is due at the end of May. Because neither the state nor city budgets will be approved by then, the district will likely seek an extension for the second year in a row.
realization that no matter how many times I said no to Marciene, I would say yes. She never stopped and she never will.
The Mayors Commission for Literacy, founded during the Goode Administration, was rst brought to his at-
MATTLEMANcontinued from page 1
tention when campaigning in 1983. Thats when Good
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