Broad Street Brief: Property Revaluations Send Residential Values Soaring, Commercial Values Rise Less Significantly | Cozen O’Connor
Property revaluations send residential values skyrocketing and business values rise less dramatically
On Tuesday, the Kenney administration announced that the value of the average residential property had increased by 31%. Non-residential real estate increased by 9%. It is clear that the administration and the city council have disagreements on how to compensate for this drastic increase in residents’ taxes and how to spend the additional revenue.
New push for affordable housing includes free land and building incentives
As part of the Neighborhood Preservation Initiative (NPI), the city will offer empty lots with the goal of creating 1,000 new affordable homes to sell to first-time buyers for less than $250,000. Council members present at the launch of the initiative say they expect construction of the first houses to begin later this year, with the houses being built over several years.
Councilman Green Presents Part Two of “Civic Legislative Program”
Last week, Councilman Derek Green introduced the second half of his “Civic Legislative Agenda,” a set of bills aimed at encouraging greater civic engagement, the participation of Philadelphians, and promoting good government. Following on from a set of bills introduced earlier this year, this latest package proposes:
- A proposed charter amendment that, if approved by voters, would create a redistricting commission after each federal census to solicit public input regarding the composition of council districts, propose new district boundaries to the city council, and produce a report on its decision-making process and methods.
- A bill revising and expanding retaliation protections for individuals – or “whistleblowers” – who file complaints or seek advice from the Ethics Council.
- A bill recommending technical changes and cleanup of language related to the section of the code for “Political Contributions and Expenditures”.
Parking authority retracts $10 million claim against school district
The Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA) announced that it would rescind a request asking the school district to reimburse them for more than $10 million, which the PPA said was due to accounting errors on their part. The refund request has become a political flashpoint since it was made in late 2021.
Philadelphia police seek $24 million budget increase
Last Tuesday, the Philadelphia Police Department asked the City Council to allocate an additional $24 million for the service. Most of this funding would be used to increase the payroll.
City revises street rules which have faced opposition from the restaurant industry
New regulations concerning street shops could be established as early as May 12. These new regulations are significantly less onerous than the previous version which faced stiff opposition from the restaurant industry.
Suburban spotlight: Rail service between Reading and Philadelphia could be restored
Berks, Chester and Montgomery county commissioners voted to authorize the creation of the Schuylkill River Passenger Rail Authority, which would restore passenger rail service between localities.
The Philadelphia City Council holds several hearings throughout the legislative calendar. You can watch the hearings here.
- On Thursday, May 5 at 2 p.m., the Public Safety Commission will review abandoned vehicle and illegal dumping records.
- On Friday, May 6, at 10:00 a.m., the Special Committee on Child Separation in Philadelphia will hold a hearing to “better understand the role of Community Coordinating Agencies (CUAs).
- On Friday, May 13, at 10 a.m., the Public Safety Commission will hold a hearing on the Police Department’s Neighborhood Services Unit, specifically regarding the prevalence of abandoned vehicles in the city.
- On Friday, May 20 at 10:00 a.m., the Rules Committee will hold a hearing on the Affordable Housing Preservation Overlay District.
- Monday, May 9: Land Assessment Office, Tax Review Board
- Tuesday, May 10: Office of the Director General, Town Hall for Children and Families, Town Planning and Development
- Wednesday May 11: Street service, firefighters, prisons