Friday, September 30, 2005

Lots of chewy news bits

  • Those who once touted private management companies like Edison as the solution to the woes of Philadelphia's public schools are a bit chastened by the report today that no notable improvements have been delivered. Test scores are improving district-wide, but the specialized approaches aren't showing any special benefits.

  • While Pennsylvanians are pressing their legislators to give some consideration to a minimum wage increase, New Jersey is already plunging ahead with the first step of their two-phase increase: the minimum there will go up by $1 (to $6.15) tomorrow, to be followed by another $1 next fall.

  • Philadelphia's City Council is going to look at the property valuations used as the basis of tax assessments, with an eye to buffering their constituents from the sharp tax increases that could accompany a valuation realignment to reflect the housing boom in some parts of the city.

  • The newly state-controlled Phila. Parking Authority may have overstepped its bounds when it decided to start ticketing cars for missing or outdated registration stickers. A judge points out that the registration issue carries safety and criminal implications that are outside the authority of the revenue-hungry PPA. oops!

  • Meantime, the contract dispute between SEPTA and its workers (see issues here), forgotten over the summer (see truce here), may be about to come to the fore again, as the voluntary deadline extension draws to a close this weekend. No mention of scheduled talks, but the workers are meeting to discuss a strike. Eep!


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