Fishtown Spirit: Community meeting coverage of soda tax, I-95 and more

Mayor Nutter Press Aide Katherine Martin addresses the April Fishtown Neighbors Association meeting.

A few times a month, I go out to civic and town watch meetings in a variety of neighborhoods. Yes, I actually find most of them to be fun — local politics on the smallest of scale.

Since moving to Fishtown, I’ve begun going to monthly Fishtown Action and Fishtown Neighbors Meetings and filing reports for the Fishtown Spirit. It’s all within a few blocks of my house and endearing to be sure. Each month, I’ll probably share those two and any other pieces I might have had in the Spirit.

As I wrote after my first piece for my small, local community news weekly, it’s my way of getting to know new people and the issues facing them in a new neighborhood.

I have one on two controversial proposals in today’s issue:

City officials defended two controversial proposals to close a $150 million shortfall in the city’s 2011 budget at last week’s Fishtown Neighbors Association meeting.

During the 90 minute session that saw raised voices and broad criticism of city spending, Deputy Streets Commissioner Carlton Williams addressed a proposed $300 trash collection fee and Mayoral Press Aide Katharine Martin talked about the two-cent-per-ounce sweetened beverage excise tax. Both proposals need City Council approval and remain executive branch proposals that are vying against ongoing deliberations, including suggestions to raise property taxes and tax smokeless tobacco products.

Read the rest here, or below find other pieces I’ve done in the past few months below.

FACT introduces new SugarHouse General Manager

APR 14 — Wendy Hamilton says she has two main priorities weighing on her mind.

The new general manager of the SugarHouse Casino on Delaware Avenue, which is currently under construction, needs to get the embattled slots parlor opened by mid-September and she wants to give Fishtown residents and others who live near the casino the first crack at the 700 jobs that will be created.

Read the rest here.

Girard Avenue to See Summer Facelift

MAR 31 — This summer looks to be very kind to Girard Avenue through Fishtown.

Updates on two major projects aimed at improving the beauty and functionality of the corridor were discussed at a recent Fishtown Neighbors Association meeting. Both are due to make major strides as the weather warms up.

Read the rest here.

Meet the Neighbors: FNA introduces new board and RecycleBank program

FEB 24 — Dragging those familiar blue recycling tubs to your curb each week can start to earn savings at area retailers for residents who join a new city program.

Read the rest here.