News & Brews August 17, 2023

Get News & Brews in your inbox each day: Subscribe here!

Ballot battle in Philly council race

Per Philly’s Home Rule Charter, two seats of the seven at-large Council seats must go to a non-majority party member. Historically, this has meant a Republican. But the progressive Working Families Party (WFP), which won one of the minority seats in 2019, is seeking to win the other this year. The WFP is currently facing a legal challenge over how the candidates filed their statements of financial interest—electronically v. hard copy with a “wet” signature. A judge ruled in favor of the WFP candidates, but Republicans yesterday appealed that ruling, noting “contradictory precedent cases.”

WSJ: ‘The inequity of public school funding’

The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board writes that charter schools, on average, receive about 30% less funding per student than traditional public schools. And this funding “gap has been remarkably persistent for 20 years,” according to the Department of Education Reform at the University of Arkansas, which has studied charter funding for two decades. The reason for the gap “is political power. Teachers unions have it, while charter schools don’t.” The ed board concludes, “Given that charters are public schools … isn’t it time public education brought some equity to its funding?”

Mackenzie: ‘My four principles for America’

GOP state Rep. Ryan Mackenzie—who is running for Congress in the Lehigh Valley’s 7th Congressional District, currently represented by Democrat Susan Wild—has an op-ed outlining his core principles. They are: growing the economy, defending our values, securing our communities, and restoring our freedoms. Read his piece here.

Possible U.S. Steel takeover could have huge local impact

The Post-Gazette covers the current bidding war to take over U.S. Steel and how it might affect Pittsburgh’s “Steel City” identity. “From a psychological standpoint, losing U.S. Steel would be a blow to a lot of people,” says one historian. Additionally, a relocation of the company’s headquarters could also “threaten local investment.”  U.S. Steel “spends more than $1 billion in the region each year.”

A look at Philly’s mayoral candidates

Republican David Oh “faces long odds” against Democrat Cherelle Parker in this year’s Philadelphia mayoral race. Against this backdrop, the Inquirer profiles both candidates, looking at their political backgrounds and previewing the upcoming campaign.

Sign up to get News & Brews in your inbox