Thursday, September 17, 2009

How Does a City Close Its Parks?

Readers in Philadelphia are all too aware of the precarious state of the City at this moment. Without the State's approval of a budget for the current year, and of a temporary sales tax hike for the City of Philadelphia, we are due to go to Budget Plan C in a scant few weeks, with lay-off notices going out tomorrow. This budget calls for the closing of park services and libraries, and social service agencies receiving City funding have been affected for months - shuttering the spaces that provide safe havens and support for those without a safety net. And editorial on today asks: How exactly do parks close? Does it mean we can't sit on a bench? This editorial, "Plan C: Who's Going to Kill the Rats?" goes on to point out the lack of a plan involved in Budget Plan C, which calls for cuttings and closings, but doesn't tell citizens anything about how life will function without its courts or timed traffic lights or its park services.

Coming out of this legislative disaster, we need a movement to hold our legislators, who just got back from a paid vacation while small businesses and non-profits have gone unpaid, accountable. They should not be getting paid while other citizens are not.

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