Textile Jobs: With Textile jobs on the rise in the south and the exportation of American textiles on the rise aboard, it’s time for Philadelphia to re-enter the textiles market. Philadelphia was once a leader in textile production industry. Now we are a city of old decaying factories while the textile industry is experience a job boom in the south; with the production of nonwoven products. We need to revitalize our old factories and attempt to compete in this industry in which we were once considered the “workshop of the world”.
Natural Gas Jobs: PA is the fastest growing natural gas producing state in America. Marcellus Shales is estimated to create over 212,000 jobs over the next decade. Due to our location as a port city we are in prime position to take advantage of the natural energy job boom. We can refine it here, and ship it from here worldwide from our ports; creating new jobs while making us the lowest energy costing city in America. This will help us compete to attract businesses looking for low cost energy, creating residual industry job growth.
Increase Police Force: Although in general terms, crime is down, however our homicide rate still remains one of the highest in the country. Currently, 74% of or homicides occurred outdoors, 80% with a gun, and 80% of the perpetrators had a previous arrest record. Neighborhoods like Northwest Philadelphia shockingly are among the highest, 60% of our crimes occur in 8 of our 22 police districts, in the city. These are alarming number no matter how you look at it. Since 2000 we have had our police force cut by 500 officers. Based on our crime statistics it seems as though we should be ramping up our police force.
Police Advisory Board: I stand in full support of RESOLUTION NO. 120225, Introduced March 15, 2012 by Councilmember Jones, Referred to the Committee on Law and Government. Which would amend “The Philadelphia Home Rule Charter to establish an independent Police Advisory Commission, and to provide for the Commission’s funding, appointment, powers and duties, including, but not limited to, the duty to investigate complaints alleging misconduct by members of the Philadelphia Police Department against members of the public; and providing for the submission of the amendment to the electors of Philadelphia.”
Business Tax Reform: Our current tax structure chases businesses away from Philadelphia instead of attracting them. Our business burden is higher than the majority of US cities. I have a two part plan. First, we implement the recommendations in the Philadelphia Tax Reform Commission Report: to reduce the wage tax to 3.25% for residents and non-residents, and phase out the Business Privilege Tax.
Elected School Board: It’s time to take the children of Philadelphia education out of the hands of bureaucrats and professional politicians. Philadelphia is the only county in the State that does not have an elected School Board. The makeup of the board needs to be Bi-Partisan, in the same manner as we elect our City Commissioners, allowing both political parties to have a seat at the table. To date, every attempt to successfully operate our broken school system has failed from; city control to state intervention, and here we stand with one of the worst public school systems in the real free world. The time is now, to put our children education in the hands of qualified citizens and not the friends of elected officials.
Religious based Education Tax Exemption: For Primary & Secondary Education gives parents the power to choose a quality religious based academic institution for their children, instead being forced to attend failing schools in their neighborhood. The tax exemption (.7382%) to the school portion of the real estate tax is the only logical and fair option for, Parental Choice in Philadelphia