DAILY GRINDER: Big Beverage, Big Spenders in Philadelphia
Hate to say we told you so. But here goes: In January, PW published a story about how the American Beverage Association was gearing up for another fight for soda in Philadelphia, particularly with a new ad campaign called Smart Taxpayers Exposing Waste, which essentially shows taxpayers how much money governments are spending on anti-soda initiatives rather than roads and blue collar workers. Now, it helps to know The American Beverage Association has been the biggest lobbying spender in the city of Philadelphia so far this year. They put $238,921 into the city in the first three months of 2012, contacting all Council members and spending the bulk of their cash on advertising.
The Obama Campaign held a conference call on Friday with Philadelphia/Montco U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz. Here’s what she said: “Looking at [Romney’s] record in Massachusetts as Governor, we can see how he would take his private sector experience to the Federal Government. Running for Governor he promised that he would create more jobs, there would be less debt and smaller government, but that actually didn’t work. The actions that he took in fact lead to opposite outcomes, he really failed to deliver on those promises.”
The state Department of Public Welfare recently took some criticism after it spent $20,000 on a new flagpole. So, a Harrisburg-area businessman, as he’s being called, offered to donate one for free. His offer was rejected. The Department cited safety or something.
Philadelphia City Council has voted 16-0 to rename the Criminal Justice Center after Juanita Kidd Stout, who was the first African-American woman to serve on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
The anti-graffiti proposal being pushed by Mayor Michael Nutter and Republican At-Large Councilman David Oh would create “a new penalty specifically for incidents of vandalism to monuments and works of art,” and up “the minimum penalties for incidents of damage to such sites that may involve ethnic intimidation.”
Council is still split on Mayor Nutters Actual Value Initiative plan. Councilman Mark Squilla recently told Newsworks there are “several people on both sides of the issue, but the majority are on the fence.” Amongst those on the fence: him.
Police were “pleased” with yesterday’s race behavior in Manayunk.
The pope is coming to visit Philadelphia in 2015.
A Molotov Cocktail was thrown into Victor Guzman’s home early Saturday morning. Guzman is a witness in his son’s murder, and the suspected murderer, a 20-year-old man named Kalil Cooper, has not been caught.