Newsletter for Wednesday, Dec. 23
INSTAGRAM OF THE DAY
Have yourself a cherry blossom Christmas; photo via @k10catoe on Instagram.
A CHRISTMAS MIRACLE? THE PA BUDGET IMPASSE COULD END TODAY
The state House in Harrisburg was all ready yesterday to tee up a stop-gap budget that would have temporarily funded schools, non-profits and other entities that are pushing six months without state funding. Instead, the House voted 100-99 to put themselves in a position to approve a full spending plan — one that was already agreed to by the state Senate and Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration. Of course, there’s still time for this thing to fall apart. But it’s also possible a miracle on Christmas Eve Eve is in store for today and the nearly six-month-long impasse will come to a close. Follow along with our PA budget story to receive updates.
PORNY HIGH COURT JUSTICE SUSPENDED OVER RACY EMAILS
State Supreme Court Justice Michael Eakin cried in front of a review board Monday, saying his emails uncovered as part of the wide-ranging Porngate scandal were simply “male banter.” Well, the Court of Judicial Discipline disagreed. The board ruled that Eakin’s emails that contained images of naked women and racial stereotypes “tainted the Pennsylvania judiciary in the eyes of the public.” It suspended him pending a trial when it will be decided if he violated judicial conduct rules. In the meantime, Eakin will still receive his annual salary — all $203,409 of it.
SOCIAL MEDIA AND THE TRIAL OF KATHRYN KNOTT
The jury of now-convicted gay basher Kathryn Knott was tasked with deciding her guilt or innocence in a case that, thanks to the immediacy of our timelines and the eagerness of amateur sleuths desperate to help, the public had already decided. From investigation to prosecution to Knott’s firing to opinions about her sentencing, seemingly everyone had thoughts about what should happen months before the actual criminal proceedings began. Welcome to criminal justice in the age of Twitter and Facebook.
The Pennsylvania Ballet performs a Christmas classic, "The Nutcracker," with help from the Philadelphia Boys Choir.
Where: Academy of Music at 240 S. Broad St. 19102
When: December 23, 2015 at 7:00 p.m.
How much: $35 and up
BILLY PENN LIKES
HOW ED RENDELL AND OTHER PROMINENT PHILLY JEWS SPEND CHRISTMAS
Ed Rendell says that when he was mayor he used to wear a suit 364 days a year. The only day he didn’t was Christmas. In the ’90s, some of Philadelphia’s top elected officials and appointed staff were Jewish. But the only current Jews with prominent positions in city government are City Controller Alan Butkovitz and Councilman-elect Allan Domb. Here’s what they told Billy Penn about how they’ve spent the holiday.
INDEGO, UBER, NO KEY FOR SEPTA: THE YEAR IN PHILLY TRANSIT
For those who care about how Philly gets around, it’s been a wild year. Uber went full-throttle and Lyft launched. Indego is here, and yes, SEPTA still swears the Key is coming at some point. The crash of Amtrak 188 meant a renewed interest in rail safety, and the city announced that, after long last, it’ll be getting its *first* protected bike lane. It’s been a big year for transportation in Philadelphia. Here’s a look back at some of the biggest stories of the year.