Newsletter for Tuesday, Oct. 28
GET OUTSIDE WHILE YOU CAN
Philadelphia’s Museum Mile — and today, with temperatures set to top 70 degrees, would be a good day to visit it. Photo by @discover_phl on Instagram.
NO SEPTA STRIKE THIS WEEK, BUT NO WORD ON NEXT
The head of SEPTA’s largest union said Monday that the subway, bus and trolley drivers aren’t planning on walking off the job “in the immediate future,” which he later defined as this week. But TWU Local 234 chief Willie Brown didn’t rule out a strike next week, and dodged questions from reporters about whether or not operators were planning to be on the picket line on Election Day. The union authorized a strike during a special meeting Sunday as it continues in talks with SEPTA about pay and benefits, but Brown said Monday that the gap between SEPTA and the union is still like “California to PA.”
UBER X DRIVER: I WASN’T WARNED ABOUT IMPOUNDS AND FINES
Uber plans to continue operating its UberX service despite impoundments over the weekend and a pledge from the Philadelphia Parking Authority that it will continue to seize vehicles and levy $1,000 fines. That kinda puts drivers in a bind — and according to a driver interviewed by Billy Penn, the ride-sharing company hasn’t been forthcoming about the risk, or even about Saturday’s sting operation. “I wonder why they’re doing that,” the driver said, “putting drivers in jeopardy.” Uber spokesperson Taylor Bennett said Uber has covered all costs associated with the impoundments from Saturday and would continue to do so in the future. As for not giving the drivers a heads up? “We didn’t expect horses,” he said. “We didn’t expect riot gear.”
CITY COUNCIL KILLS $1.9B PGW SALE; WATCHDOG BLASTS ‘COWARDLY’ PROCESS
It was to be one of Mayor Nutter’s signature agreements: Selling the city’s gas works to a private company would bring in nearly $2 billion, helping with a pension plan problem and jump-starting energy investment in Philadelphia. Instead another signature achievement — spectacular dysfunction with City Council — was on full display Monday as that body’s leadership called a press conference and cited a host of reasons why it was killing the deal, declining to even hold public hearings on the issue. “The simple fact of the matter is that there is not support on the City Council,” president Darrell Clarke told reporters. Ellen Kaplan, the interim president of good government group the Committee of Seventy, blasted the “disgraceful and cowardly” move: “Today’s action violates every principle of transparent and effective governance.” Who’s happy? The union that represents PGW’s workers, which noted that the agreement of sale only locked in rates for 3 years and could have dire consequences for poor and low-income customers.
TO DO: LEARN ABOUT CRIMINAL MINDS
WHAT: Born Bad? Violence, Punishment and the Brain; PHDs talk about “increasing evidence showing a biological basis for violent behavior,” and “how this knowledge should be used to protect society.”
WHEN: 7-8:30 PM
WHERE: The Franklin Institute
HOW MUCH: Non-members, $5; members, free
BILLY PENN LIKES
PHILLY TV NEWS: GOOD AT TAKING POLITICAL ADS, NOT SO GOOD AT DOING POLITICAL NEWS
The November 4 election was well-represented during Channel 3’s 6 PM newscast on Oct. 16, according to this post from the Sunlight Foundation. The problem? All that came by way of paid speech… In other words, political ads. There were 11 in the half-hour newscast, counterbalanced and fact-checked by zero actual news stories. “Instead of an all-news channel for news junkies,” University of Pennsylvania political media analyst Kathleen Hall Jamieson called the result “a channel for ad junkies.”
NEED A HINT FOR A WEEKEND DAY TRIP? VISIT PHILLY HAS A FACEBOOK QUIZ FOR THAT
Perhaps you’re thinking of visiting a museum around Philly, sampling some wine, or exploring the past? Well, what’s your personality? What’s your mood? What are you FEEEELLING? Visit Philly built a Facebook quiz to go deep on those questions (well, at least the first two) and generate the perfect event for you. Click over to try.