This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
by Kevin McCorry for NewsWorks
Education advocates have released a report card on the performance of Philadelphia’s City Council and the Pennsylvania General Assembly. In this budgetary climate, there’s no such thing as an "easy" A.
This is the kind of report card that kids might hide in the bottom of their lockers.
The advocates, led by Public Citizens for Children and Youth, gave City Council a C-minus, saying "Council exhibits potential and desire to help, but fails to act on viable solutions."
Chief among its "incomplete assignments," the advocates said, was Council’s failure to finalize a 1 percent sales tax increase that would raise $120 million in recurring annual funding.
Other incompletes included the Use and Occupancy and liquor by the drink taxes, and failing to eliminate the 10-year property tax abatement.
The state Assembly received a D, the advocates said, for not implementing an equitable funding formula and for not enacting the increased tax on cigarettes that City Council authorized.