• The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers (PFT) will endorse Mayor Michael Nutter at 2 p.m. today, Penn Alexander School, 4209 Spruce St. Per the PFT press release:
Jerry Jordan, PFT President says the Mayor "is committed to making our schools safe. He has championed programs to improve graduation rates and has fought consistently for full and equitable funding of our public schools. He is bringing stakeholders to the table to improve educational outcomes throughout the city."
• Meanwhile, mayoral challenger T. Milton Street Sr. has sent the incumbent another letter about firefighter/medic safety. Here it is:
Your intent to delay a response for 30 days to my request for information regarding matters related to the safety of our fire fighters - that you acknowledge was received on April 12, 2011 - is disappointing and unacceptable.
The safety of our fire fighters and emergency medical technians requires a rapid if not immediate response.Seven days after receiving the request you now say you need 30 more days for what amounts to your administration's efforts to once again discount those who rely on the integrity and support of your office.
It seems that your reasons for delay are more politically motivated rather than the reasons you stated. 30 days of course would delay your response well after the public would be able to hold you accountable for the neglect of our fire department. If 30 days is required it should be at the least 30 days from the date the request was received which would be May 12th not May 19th.
This request goes to the heart of the statements made by you and your aids that you have done everything possible to protect the public and our fire fightes. If the city neglected to apply for a $15M Safer Grant this would amount to gross neglegience and put the City in direct violation of the Home Rule Charter section 5-400 which requires the city to maintain adequate equipment and personnel for our fir fighting efforts. If you did apply then you should provide all the information requested.
This and future attention to these fiscal matters would prevent the need for brownouts, reduced shifts for EMTs, and engine company closures.
I have been told that Brown qouta may have contributed to the injuries sustained by these brave public servants this week. This must be addressed and we need answers now. You profess to have a transparent government and we would like to see you keep your word.
As Mayor you have a responsibility to protect those that protect us. You must give answers and you must do what is right for all of our sakes.
Our fire fighters and EMTs matter, the lives of our citizens do count and depend on its public officials to be faithful stewards of the public trust.
I look forward to a timely response.
• Milton also wrote about school-district finances:
Once again your administration's intent to delay providing important documents and basic information is disheartening. Transparency is no longer a term your administration should use.
It leads to an evergrowing concern that you had planned even last year to lay off teachers, reduce necessary functions, and cut spending in a way that will devastate our public schools. This school district was in financial trouble well before the governor's proposed cuts.
Your intention to delay these answers is an affront to our teachers, parents, and our students.
We will expect that your 30 days begin with the date of your reception of my request which would then be due May 14 but I would hope you would do the right thing and provide it sooner.
Refusing to provide this information in a timely fashion could also demonstrate as I said before that you entered into discussions with the PFT under false pretenses. I urge you to restore public confidence by providing the information requested.
• At 2:30 p.m., Gov. Corbett will sign the first legislation to reach his desk since his inauguration. It's House Bill 377, which amends the state Construction Code Act.