Chief of Staff to Mayor Kenney to Resign, Join ChristianaCare in Executive Role
Jim Engler, the Chief of Staff to Mayor Jim Kenney, has announced that he will be resigning at the end of the month to accept a position as Executive Director of the Office of the President and Chief of Staff at Delaware-based health care provider ChristianaCare. He will be replaced by First Deputy Chief of Staff Christina Pastrana Hernandez. Engler has worked with Mayor Kenney since 2015 and is leaving 15 months before the end of the mayor’s term.
New Inclusionary Zoning Bill Proposed by City Council President Clarke
A new bill proposed by City Council President Darrell Clarke would, if passed, expand affordable housing requirements to accommodate more than just low-income Philadelphians. The legislation would require all new, large residential construction projects in the Councilmember’s district to offer 20% of units below market rate sale prices or rents, and also redefines “affordable housing” for rental units as being no higher than 30% of residents’ monthly income. A similar inclusionary zoning bill was passed last year by Councilmembers Jamie Gauthier and Maria Quiñones-Sánchez
Quetcy Lozada Expected to Win Special Election in Philadelphia’s Seventh Councilmanic District
A few weeks ago, after nearly two decades of service, District Seven Councilmember Maria Quiñones-Sánchez resigned her position to launch her mayoral campaign. Now, she is passing the torch to her political protégé and former Chief of Staff Quetcy Lozada, who is poised to win the special election in November to finish the remainder of Quiñones-Sánchez’s term. The Seventh Council District encompasses a predominantly Latino community in North Philadelphia, making its representative’s ability to navigate language barriers and address the issue of rampant opioid use particularly important.
New Dranoff Developments Coming to South Broad Street
Prolific Philadelphia property developer Carl Dranoff is planning new construction for South Broad Street, which will feature 176 apartments and ground-floor retail space. The Broad and Carpenter and Broad and Pine buildings — which will break ground in early 2023 and 2024, respectively — are the most recent examples of the trend of real estate development in this neighborhood.
City Council to Consider a Permanent Version of Eviction Diversion Program
City Council is considering extending Philadelphia’s Eviction Diversion program, which is set to expire at the end of the year. The program — which began in August 2020 as a result of pandemic-related hardships — requires third-party mediation for landlords and tenants prior to the filing of an eviction as a potential alternative to going to court. Councilmember Helen Gym, who is spearheading the attempts to make the program permanent, hopes for a hearing on the bill sometime next month.
District Attorney Krasner to Provide Records to House Committee
Last week, the Pennsylvania House voted to hold Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner in contempt for failing to comply with a subpoena that requested documents pertaining to the criminal investigation of a former Philadelphia police officer. Now, after declaring that the House’s hunt for grounds for impeachment is “undemocratic” and maintaining that its legislative panel is engaging in “dirty politics,” District Attorney Krasner has agreed to comply with the subpoena and will share relevant documents as well as information on the Office’s current prosecutorial policies.