The Philadelphia Public Record Is Proud to Announce to Our Readers the Selection of
Joey Vento As Philadelphia’s
“Public Servant of the Year” For the Year 2009
In honor of his many contributions to this city which he has served so admirably for many years.
Vol. III No. 9 (Issue 73)
Pol Sets Up Shop
State Rep. Kenyatta Johnson opened his South Philadelphia office last weekend to meet local residents and describe what services he and his staff can provide. The office is located at 1610 S. Broad Street in Philadelphia. Johnson talked to residents about the upcoming launch of his mobile constituent services at local senior centers, job training and career development seminars, and clinics on legal issues. “I’m excited to have people from (Cont. Page 2)
KENYATTA JOHNSON officially opens up office at 1601 S. Broad Street last weekend. Photo by Donald Terry
s the owner of Geno’s Steaks, the leading oasis for those craving the famous “Philadelphia Cheesesteak”, which he has made famous nationally and around the world, Joseph Vento has been more involved in public life than any other small businessman in this city. He has contributed millions of dollars to charities. Many schools and charitable organizations have benefited by his largesse. In addition he has given the income generated in a full day of sales from Geno’s Steaks to families of fallen Police Officers. He has also established a memorial at Geno’s for police and firefighters who died in the course of their duties. He has been active in causes defending the memory of fallen police and firefighters as well as defending the rights of all Americans to speak their mind and be heard. He is a strong champion of the United States as a land of the free and the brave and as a melt(Turn to Page 5) ing pot for legal immigrants.
“Reporting South Philadelphia the way it deserves”
February 26, 2009
Parents Make Sacrifices For Their Kids’ Education
by Rory G. McGlasson For hundreds of South Philadelphia parents, sending their kids to Catholic school is their number-one priority. With the worsening economy, parents are cutting back more than ever to meet parochial-school tuition fees. Shawn Roccuzzio pays over $10,000 every year so her three kids can attend Catholic school. She said, “We sacrifice everything: going out to dinner, high-end groceries, new cars, vacations. There is nothing we wouldn’t give up so our children can get a Catholic education.” Her daughter Dominique and son Santino attend Epiphany; her eldest son Frankie attends Roman Catholic HS. Her Husband Joseph is a mechanic for SEPTA; Shawn is a physical-education teacher. However, her tuition headaches were made a little easier last week.
Mrs. Roccuzio was one of many dollars of scholarships aid to South Philadelphia families. The scholarships totaling
$186,250 come from the Harrisburg based Bridge education program. (Cont. Page 27)
Ron Panepinto Jewelers 700 Sansom St. 215-923-1980
www.PanepintoJewelers.com We Buy Gold & Diamonds
Police Honor Vento The Citizens Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley will honor Joey Vento, Geno’s Steaks owner, at its annual cocktail party at Swan Caterers tonight. Guest speaker will be DA Lynne Abraham. The event is hosted by Dr. Julius Mingroni. It starts at 5.30 p.m. For more information, please call Citizens Crime Commission at (215)546-6532.
Flea Market At Mt. Hebron The Mount Hebron Baptist Church is hosting Flea Market, 1415 Wharton Street, on Friday, Feb. 27-28, 10 a.m.–2 p.m.For more information, please call (215) 217-1991.
Anderson Awards The Marian Anderson Historical Society presents the Classical Icon Vocal Competition, Dinner and Celebrity Ball on Friday, to help raise financial resources to advance aspiring young opera singers and other vocal artists of great promise. The evening will feature seven finalists who will perform under the stars of the Planetarium at the Franklin Institute, accompanied by pianist Barry Sames on the finest Bosendorfer concert grand piano, donated for the evening by the prestigious Cunningham Piano Co. A panel of esteemed judges will select three winners. The grand-prize winner will receive $10,000. Second and third prizes will be $5,000 and $2,500 Ibonds respectively. For more information, please call Blanche Burton-Lyles at (215) 732.9505 or Phyllis Sims at phyllis@MarianAnderson.org., or visit www.MarianAnderson.org.
Candidates Night EPIPHANY PRINCIPAL Patricia Cody and Pastor John Pidgeon flank their students: Jessica Pasquarellio, Francesca Pamisciano, Ciarra Bianculli, Nicholas Simon and Destiny Nocella.
The Neighborhood Networks hosts a District Attorneys Candidates Forum, Mar. 18 at Tritone, 1508 South Street, from 6 to 8 p.m. For (Cont. Page 2)
South Philadelphia Business Association
The South Philadelphia Public Record • February 26, 2009
Oldest Business Association in South Philadelphia – Chartered in 1897 1505 South Broad Street Philadelphia, PA 19147 (215)-336-1108 (215)-336-1149 (fax) Executive Board President – Louis Lozzi, Sr. Vice President – Barbara Capozzi, Esq. Secretary – Lou Cerino Treasurer – Reggie Lozzi Executive Director – Edward J. Wright, Jr.
To join as a member of the SPBA, please call (215)-336-1108
Growing SPBA Members A.J. Mechanical (John Franklin) Academy of Sacred Arts (Sr. Paula ) Allstate Insurance Agent (Michael Phillips) Allstate Insurance Agent (Frank Genzano) Alpha Realty Group (Joseph Bianco) Angelo’s Tile & Marble Outlet (Angelo Bucci) Cedar Shopping Centers Partnership, LP - Bruce Nobile Armando Rey Jewelers (Armando Rey) Beneficial Savings Bank (Donna Russo) Business Development (Joe Reo) Capozzi Real Estate (Barbara Capozzi) Career Link (Janice Amoroso) Carmana Designs, Ltd (Annamaria Vona) Catch (Ray Pescatore) Century 21 (Stephanie Capocci) Century 21 (Albert Perry) Cheech’s Beef & Ale (Frank Spatocco) Chickie’s Deli (Henry George) Chris Miceli (Christine Miceli) Citizen’s Bank (Darlene Cellucci) Clinical Research Services (Tracy Abraham R.N.) Commerce Bank (Rosaanna Chiappetta) Commerce Dept./OBS (Marge Marziani) Conestoga Bank (Jackie Fitzpatrick) Creative Financial Group (Tom Hayn) DeFino Law Associates (Vince DeFino) DeMarino Chiropractic Ctr. (JamesDeMarino) Dom’s Auto Repairs (Dominic Vitale) DP Construction Mngt. LLC (Mark DeMatteis) Engineer Bldg Supervisor (Phil Filippello) Foundation Investment LLC (Phil Sestito) Galdo’s Catering (Lou Galdo) Gangemi Funeral Home (Vince Gangemi) Goebel Insurance Agency (Chris Goebel) Gold Medal Disposal (Lou Gentile) Goldstein’s Men’s Clothing (Vince Talatta) Home Helpers (Ralph Digneo) JohnDelGaiso,Pediatric Dentist (John DelGaiso) Landmark Prof. Design (Vince Mancini) Leonetti/O’Leary Funeral Home (Katy Logan) Louis Tag Agency (Louis Cerino) Lou Lozzi’s Auto (Lou Lozzi) M & S Garage (Sonny Marino) Maggie Moos (Frank Pantano) Mamma Maria’s (Sante Chiavatti) Mason’s Local #592 (Mike Fera) Mercury Realty (Greg Ferry) Merit Manufacturing (John Ciancaglini) Dr. Michelle Eisenhower (Internest) Micolex Pest Control (Michael Busillo) Money Mailer of Philadelphia (Thomas Cimino)
Monti-Rago Funeral Home (Mark Rago) New York Bakery (Stephen Candeloro) Olivieri Jewelers (Daniel Olivieri) Oregon Window Co Inc. (Tony Nardy) Pacifico Ford (Rocky DeGregorio) Packer Café Inc. (Ciarrocchi) Pastificio (Frank Sangiuliano) Penna Burial Company Inc. (VictorBaldi Jr.) Petal Pusher Florist (John Vacca) Phila Family Medicine (Joseph Di Renzo) Phila Performing Arts School (Joan Pescatore) Phil’s Excellent Auto Repair (Phillip Rick’s) Pietro Jewelers Inc. (Pietro Pace) Precise Realty (Ray Rizzo) Presto Printing (John Savarese) Professional Custom Tailoring (Pat Scioli) Prudential Savings Bank (Nick DiGianvittorio) Public Record (Jim Tayoun) Ralph & Rickey Inc (Rickey Sciulli) RHG Products (Michael Ristagna) New York Life Insurance (Rosetta Conigliaro) Rizzio’s General Auto Repairs (Mike Rizzio) Ron Donatucci, Reg. of wills (Ron Donatucci) Ron Patterson, Esq. (Ron Patterson) Royal Villa Café (Nella Scafidi) Scaramuzzi Construction Co. (Frank Scaramuzzi) Simonetta’s Italian Deli (Philip Simonetta) South Phila Family Practice (Bill O’Brien DO) South Phila. Orthodontic Assoc.- Steven Cohen Stolfo Funeral Home (Paul Stolfo) Sunoco Oil Refinery (John McCann) Swan Caterer’s (Carmen D’Aquilante) The Cutting Point (Jerry Masciantonio) The Temple Group Inc. (Maceo Cummings) Today’s Styles (John Palella) United Savings Bank (Denise D’Eletto) University Dynamics MRI (Linda A Duffy) Vare Ave. Auto Sales (Todd Coles) Vince Guisini, Esq. (Vince Guisini) South Philly.com (Don Burleson) Weccacoe Development Inc. (Fred Druding Sr.) William Mestichelli, DDS (William Mestichelli) Southern Auto Tags (Anthony Prisco) Southwark Civic Assn. (Karen Brown) South Philly Pretzel Factory (Sam Sklaroff) P.N.C. Bank (Joanne Baccari) P.N.C. Bank (Chad Shank) Your Optimal Health LLc (Freddie Ganno) United Check Cashing (John Shegda) William Festa Realty (Ed LeClair)
Paid for by funding through a DCED Grant, Commonwealth of PA
Kenyatta’s New Office
(Cont. from Page 1) the District come out and see what services and assistance my staff and I can help them with,” Johnson said. “Raising the level of expectation and providing quality constituent services for the residents of the 186th Legislative Dist. will be our primary focus.” For more information, please call his office at (215) 9523378.
STATE SEN. Ant h o n y Williams j o i n s Council President A n n a Verna and State Rep. Bill Keller.
CONGRESSMAN Robert Brady joins Kenyatta Johnson at his office opening on S. Broad Street. KENYATTA JOHNSON and colleagues State Brady has a District Office across the road from Reps. Vanessa Lowery Brown and Ron Waters with Vanessa Edwards are all smiles for this pic. State Rep. Johnson on the east side of Broad.
(Cont. from Page 1) more information, contact Damon K. Roberts at 215965-1582. Soles for Your Shoes Philadelphia area residents are invited to recycle their ‘gently worn’ shoes for people in need. Every 17 seconds, Soles4Souls Inc. gives away another pair of shoes to someone in need. The shoe charity has earned glowing endorsements from Hollywood stars and professional athletes, but the people that truly make the non-profit organization effective are those who clean out their closets to personally drop off their ‘gently worn’ shoes at a participating location, such as Philadelphia Runner. Soles4Souls and Philadelphia Runner will be collecting your gently worn footwear and/or donations to ship the shoes to people in need, whether they are victims of a natural disaster or subject to living in extreme poverty. It is
estimated Americans have 1.5 billion pairs of unused shoes lying in their closets. The charity can use each and every one of these pairs to make a tangible difference in someone’s life. “We can use the shoes taking up space in your closet to change the world one pair at a time,” Elsey said. “We need our partners in Philadelphia to ‘STEP UP’ and get behind our call for action. It’s one of the most simple yet profound gifts you can make, because it will greatly improve someone’s life in the most difficult of times,” he said. People and companies interested in donating can visit the organization’s website at www.giveshoes.org, and follow the instructions. Ballers Wanted The Southwark Civic Association is looking for basketball players in the neighborhood. The Kids team and adult team are looking to swell its ranks. Practices are every Tuesday and Saturday at the Southwark School Gym, 7-9 p.m. For more information call Matt McKeown (215) 799-6048. Equal Partners in Change
holds meetings 5-7 p.m. Feb. 12, Apr. 9 and Jun. 11 at the Dixon House, 1920 S. 20th Street, and Mar. 12 and May 14 at United Communities, 2029 S. 8th Street. Other Listings… CODA Program holds Beacon Café, a free monthly open-mic night with a live band and recording, 5-8 p.m. Feb. 18, at Norris S. Barratt MS, 16th & Wharton Streets. Stephanie Tisdale, 980-2254484 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Single Parents Society holds senior dances 8-11 p.m. Fridays, 1430 S. Passyunk Avenue. (215) 465-2298. South Philadelphia Older Adult Center holds a Social Night 7-10 p.m. Wednesdays. Cost: $6. 1430 E. Passyunk Avenue. (215) 952-0547. Passyunk Square Civic Association holds a community cleanup 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturdays at Gold Star Park. (215) 605-5153 and (215) 551-0309. www.passyunk.org. JCC’s Stiffel Senior Center has a thrift shop that sells used clothing 10 a.m.-noon Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays. 604 Porter Street. (215) 4683500.
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The Public Record • February 26, 2009
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page 4 The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Sarmina’s Tough School No candidate for Supreme Court has a more serious resume than Common Pleas Judge Teresa Sarmina. Where she works, “life or death” decisions come with the job description. For the last five years Judge Sarmina has served in the Common Pleas Homicide Program. She has presided at more than 100 jury and bench trials, including 12 deathpenalty cases, three of which led to a jury’s imposition of a sentence of death. It’s a tough school. No branch of judicial work undergoes more intense scrutiny and review – or places a greater weight on the individual conscience. It’s a court where “nobody walks out a winner,” the Judge acknowledges. “I have learned never to prejudge anything,” Judge Sarmina relates soberly. “Don’t look at the way a per-
TERESA SARMINA ... tough son is dressed, for instance. More often than not, you would be wrong to judge by first impressions. A judge must be a tabula rasa.” Elected to Common Pleas in 1997, Judge Sarmina had previously worked for State Attorney General Ernie Preate and Philadelphia DA Ed Rendell. She came to
Philadelphia from small-town Ohio by way of Washington, D.C., where she attended Georgetown Law School. Judge Nelson Diaz, for whom she clerked here, was her first mentor and tutor in the judicial role. Judge Sarmina’s five years with the DA’s Office saw her rotate through every kind of criminal unit. She handled a lot of drug cases. Because of that background, she was recruited to the State AG’s Office to run Region 9 Drug Strike Force for the State AG. Investigations, wiretaps and search warrants are the building blocks of this sophisticated prosecutorial specialty, which led to charging 53 defendants with methamphetamine offenses. As Senior Deputy AG, Judge Sarmina also had experience with complex white-
JOHN SABATINA JR.
Greenlee Wake Up Philadelphia!
Room 580 City Hall P. 215-686-3446/7 F. 215-686-1927
Chairman Mary DiGiacomo Colins reports the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has come a long way in a short time. Colins said projections indicate these new facilities will bring in 40-45% more revenue on top of the $2 billion already generated. She said seven facilities are open and another four are expected to open within the next year. Additionally, two casinos will transfer from temporary operations to permanent. In regards to PGCB’s budget request, Colins explained the request accounts for the anticipated increased workload and includes a 6.4% increase. Colins said the increase is needed in order to get these facilities up and running and to maintain adequate enforcement. Just imagine what will happen with those figures when, and if ever, the city’s two projected casinos are allowed to get running.
ROBERT C. DONATUCCI 185th District 1809 Oregon Ave, Phila., PA 19145
174th District State Representative 8100 Castor Ave Phila, PA 19152 Hours: 9am to 5pm Telephone: 215-342-6204
RONALD G. WATERS 191st Leg. District
collar crimes such as Medicaid fraud and antitrust investigations. “I am the only Philadelphian and the only woman running for Supreme Court in the Democratic primary,” Judge Sarmina notes. “The perspective women bring to the Supreme Court is indispensible to the dialog of justice,” Judge Sarmina says. “But that sensitivity is tempered by my strong law-enforcement perspective. “Everyone wants their day in court,” the Judge insists. “The Judge must provide a level playing field, a fair forum and a fair shot.” State Senator
Israel Award To Zarwin, Baum The Philadelphia Friends of American Friends of Magen David Adom will present the 2009 Lifeline Award to Norman P. Zarwin and E. Harris Baum, founding shareholders of Zarwin, Baum, DeVito, Kaplan, Schaer, Toddy, P.C., in recognition of their longtime commitment to the Jewish Community and the people of Israel. The two will be honored at the Lifeline Award Gala on Sunday, Apr. 26 at the Curtis Publishing Building, 601 Walnut Street at 5:30 p.m. STATE SENATOR
LEANNA M. WASHINGTON DISTRICT OFFICE
1555-D Wadsworth Ave. Philadelphia, PA 19150 (215) 242-0472 Fax: (215) 753-4538
Farnese First Senate District P. 215-560-1313 SenatorFarnese.com
Frank Oliver 195th District 2839 W. Girard Ave. Phila. PA 19130
WEB SITE www.senatorwashington.com
Dennis O’Brien 169th District 9811 Academy Rd Phila. PA 19114
R EP. A NGEL C RUZ DISTRICT OFFICE 2749 N. 5th St. • 215-291-5643 Staffed by
6027 Ludlow Street, Unit A
Joe Evangelista Debbie Toro
Ready to Serve you
William Keller 184th District 1531 S. 2nd Street
Property Tax and Rent Rebate Forms are now available in my district office. The rebate forms are for property taxes and rent paid during the 2008 calendar year. Please call or stop by one of my offices to pick up a rebate form. Parkwood Shopping Center 12361 Academy Road, Phila., PA 19154, 215-281-2539
Shirley M. Kitchen
8016 Bustleton Avenue Philadelphia PA 19152 215-695-1020 Open Mon. - Fri. 9:00 AM - 5 PM
3rd Sen. District 1701 W. Lehigh Ave.Ste 104 • Philadelphia, PA 19132 215-227-6161 • www.senatorkitchen.com
Sen.Mike Stack SERVING THE 5TH DISTRICT
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Record has designated him as “2009 Public Servant Of The Year”, in the hope others will do likewise. Vento’s charities are too numerous to track. Collectively they range in six figures, good years and bad. An easy touch, “Joey wants to help everybody,” notes his sister-in-law Diana Bergani, who tries to keep on top of the many checks he signs. The cheesesteak czar finds many different ways to help. A classic format, though, is a fundraising sale at Geno’s. For a day or more, Vento will donate all proceeds to a cause he wants to promote. “I’m talking about the gross, not the net,” Vento insists. “Some other businesses write off expenses for this and that; not me.” A 24-hour fundraiser at Geno’s can easily gross $40,000 in sales. His record event was a 74-hour fundraiser for victims of the World Trade Center attack on Sep. 11, 2001. Public-safety and armedservice workers enjoy a table of honor at the banquet of Vento’s generosity. Those who have died in the line of duty come first. Vento has launched fundraisers for the families of slain Police Officers Daniel Faulkner and Gary Skerski, among others, as well as the one bereaved by the loss of Officer Gennaro
Women Against Abuse. When the USS Enterprise and Wasp were in port, Vento went on board and fed thousands of troops. He
has assisted the Army National Guard, the Chapel of Four Chaplains and the Last Patrol, which works for veterans and POW-MIA serv-
ice personnel. One group is conspicuously absent from Vento’s list of beneficiaries: crimi(Cont. Page 6)
FAMOUS Joe Vento smile greets customers whenever Geno’s owner finds time away from the griddle. Here he points to sign that boosted him into political notoriety with “order in English” sign.
Pellegrini, Jr., who was killed in Iraq. He is always there for the Police Survivors Bike Run and the Hero Scholarship Fund. Leading up to his neonbright storefront is a solemn “Path of Honor”, on each brick of which is inscribed the name of a fallen Police Officer. “That way, they will never be forgotten,” Vento avows. There are 115 names with names in it now; truly, it is one charity Vento prays never to have to repeat. Still the names keep coming – seven in the last two years. Speaking of the Bike Run, Vento is an avid motorcyclist, so many of his charities have a two-wheeler theme. He has bought two bikes to donate to the Highway Patrol. Police motorcycle groups like the Blue Flames and the Blue Knights are his beneficiaries. When the Police themselves do good deeds, Vento is there for him. He is a noted supporter of the Police Athletic League and the Recreation League of Police. Those who suffer from crime also appeal to Vento’s heart. He has donated to Victim/Witness Service and
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
by Tony West In a time of crisis, when society’s frontline workers face daunting threats and challenges even as government and nonprofit budgets are collapsing, private citizens must step up to the plate and become public servants too. Joe Vento didn’t need anybody to tell him that. Public service is the story of this successful businessman, who, throughout his long career, has made it his mission to aid and support others. “I think it’s the right thing to do,” says the burly entrepreneur standing in the middle of – where else? – his famous Geno’s Steaks in the Italian Market, where he has been working 24/7 since he founded it 42 years ago. “Here I am, a guy without an education, just willing to work hard. God has been very good to me. I started with six bucks, but I have been given an opportunity. I want to give what I can to those who need help in my country. “Take care of those in the house first. In America, we share.” Vento is a model of the positive role business leaders can play in important causes. He is a living example of the spirit of publicprivate partnership on which civic progress increasingly depends. For this reason, the Philadelphia Public
Joe Vento’s Life Is One Of Public Service
page 6 The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Police Appreciate What Vento Means To Them (Cont. From Page 5) nals. “I have no sympathy for the thugs,” he snaps. Vento’s devotion to law enforcement is all the more striking because it does not exactly reflect his background. “I come from a family tradition that broke every law in the book,” he says matter-of-factly. “My dad
died, after 10 years, in jail. My brother was a gangster. I love my family, but what they did was not right.” Joey Vento took the other road. He is a stickler for law abidance, both in his own life and in others’. Many of his controversial public stands can be more clearly understood when you realize
how simple it looks to him: people who stay within the law should come first, those step outside the law should come last. Educated as he was in the School of Hard Knocks, Vento has donated to more than a dozen schools. Temple, St. Joseph’s and Villanova have enjoyed his
support. Most of his beneficiaries, however, are struggling inner-city Catholic schools, among them Annunciation, St. Nicholas, Hallahan, Our Lady of Angles, St. Mary’s, St. Casimir’s, St Monica’s and Stella Maris. Public schools, particularly in South Philadelphia where he was born and Shamong Township where he lives, have also benefited from his largesse. George Washington and Jenks ES and Simon Gratz HS are among the favored institutions. Vento is an earthy man who responds to concrete problems. One winter, Annunciation Church fell victim to a dastardly crime:
Someone stole Father Gary’s snowplow. Snow removal is not a laughing matter for churches, which are bedeviled by costly slip-and-fall lawsuits. After word of the theft reached Vento, within 24 hours Annunciation had a brand-new snowplow. Children with special needs place a chronic claim on Vento’s sympathy. He has supported the Special Olympics, the Autistic Kids Foundation, the Kixx Soccer Team’s program for special children, the Caring Center, the Children’s World Organization, Children’s Hospital, the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, the Sunshine Foundation, Skills for Life, Jamie Moyers’ Foundation for chil-
Joe Vento “Public Servant of the Year” From GANGEMI FUNERAL HOME
Joe Vento 2009 Public Servant of the Year Award Joe Vento A Man with a Heart of Gold!
Joe Vento Thank You For Being A Sponsor For Epiphany Of Our Lord’s
City of Hazleton, Pennsylvania
Epiphany Of Our Lord 1248 Jackson St. Phila. PA 19148
dren in distress, and mothers of multiple births. Sometimes it’s a fundraiser, sometimes a check, sometimes sandwiches; Vento finds many different ways to help. Vento threw a fundraiser to send teddy bears to sick children in New Orleans after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. He supports the Police Christmas Party for children of needy families. When a boy with multiple sclerosis needed a special van to go on a class trip to Florida, Vento delivered the wheels. He contributed to the Foundation of Theresa Taggart, a girl with Crohn’s Disease, a mysterious and costly autoimmune disease. When teenager Jason Sweeney of Fishtown was ambushed and slain in a gang conflict, Vento contributed to the community Foundation that was set up in Sweeney’s memory to reduce street violence. Vento’s tender-heartedness when it comes to children actually poses a problem for him. It is personally very painful for him to see children in pain, so when the time comes to enter a hospital in pursuit of one of his charities, he asks his only son Geno to go in his place. Geno the steak shop, by the way, came before Geno the son. Vento made up the company’s name by looking at other South Philadelphia businesses, tweaking the spelling a little to avoid trade-name infringement. Today Geno Vento, who is a proud worker in the family shop and aims to carry on its tradition, may be one of the few business owners in America who is named after his company rather than the other way around. Vento has contributed to the American Cancer Society, the Arthritis Foundation, the Blue Cross Broad Street Run, Methodist and St. Agnes Hospitals, St. (Cont. Page 7)
be his second trot to the same podium in a week; the Citizens’ Crime Commission is conferring a similar honor on him there this evening. Next month German American Police Association will recognize him at their annual ceremony. Vento professes astonishment: “I don’t get it. I’m not even German.” But to the men and women in blue everywhere, this business leader is truly one of their own. Next month, duty calls again as Vento organizes another sad fundraiser on Mar. 5, this time for the family of Officer John Pawlowski. For Philadelphians who are aghast at the deadly toll suffered by the city’s Police Dept., there will be only one place to eat that day. Vento’s philosophy in philanthropy is the same as his philosophy in business. “Everything I do, I always do for the long term,” Vento insists. The problem with today’s society is we are not thinking of generations down the line.”
GENO’S Steaks and Joe Vento’s smile are the mecca for all serious cheese steak lovers by day and by night.
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
(Cont. From Page 6) John’s Hospice. Vento and his wife of 49 years Eileen, nee Perno, are devoted to animals, so animal shelters have often received donations from them. On more than one occasion, Vento has become a key sponsor in pulling off a major public festival. Elton John’s 2005 concert on the Parkway for the AIDS Foundation would not have come off without his $100,000. This year was not one day old when Vento played his first ace: a $40,000 donation to fund the Mummers Parade, which had been buffeted by a loss of City money owing to the budget crisis. Without his timely support, a civic tradition more than a century old would have ended in ignominy. Next? “It looks like I’m going to have to help the St. Patrick’s Day Parade,” Vento shrugs. On Mar. 2 Vento will receive the Public Servant Of The Year award at Swan Caterers’ Waterfall Room, 2015 S. Water Street. It will
School Kids, Charity Groups Love Geno’s
Public Servant of the Year. Aston Township Police Department
page 8 The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Hands On Every Day Is The Joey Vento Way Of Doing Business
JOE VENTO, with the aid of a staffer, loads huge Italian style loaves of bread onto shelves. Vento, in the wee hours of each day’s morning, cuts the bread to size, with the leftover pieces boxed and shipped to area food kitchens.
PHIL GRANDE comes to Geno’s window for his daily fix of a hot cup of coffee and a Geno’s steak “wid” cheese.
HANDS ON is the Geno trademark as owner Joe Vento works the grill himself to prepare steak sandwich for waiting customer. Geno’s speciality is the fact steaks are put on grills as they are ordered and not “left around to be overly cooked.”
WRAPPING UP sandwich to go is Joe Vento, owner of Geno’s Steaks, who daily supervises the 24-hour operation. He checks each nook and cranny twice daily to insure the place continues to hold its title as the “cleanest foodservice operation in the city.” “I’M A MAN of few words,” says Joey Vento … not! The noted restaurateur bel i e v e s strongly in freedom of speech and says what he thinks, let the chips fall where they may.
PATTI Labelle, n o t weightconscious, enjoyed one of G e n o Vento’s s t e a k s a n d wiches “ w i d ” cheese.
Join The Philadelphia Public Record as we celebrate our th
10 Anniversary Birthday And when we will salute
Joe Vento of Geno’s Steaks As our
Public Servant Of The Year 2009 www.phillyrecord.com
This Monday, March 2, at 7 p.m.
At Swan Caterers, Water and Snyder (just east of Front St.), free parking under I-95.
Tickets: $50 at door. Open Bar, Full Buffet, Entertainment
An Excellent Opportunity for Candidates from all political parties to Mingle.
Congratulatory message advertisements still available for our commemorative Issue next Thursday, March 5th. Call John David 215-755-2000.
The Philadelphia Regional Port Authority congratulates and salutes
PHILADELPHIA native and popular singer Frankie Avalon, seen here with Geno’s Joe Vento, is just one of thousands of celebrities who have made their way to Geno’s to take a picture with Joe and enjoy a cheese steak in the process.
EVERY politician who knows how to get press and draw attention to a campaign makes a beeline to Geno’s and to be seen with Joe Vento, whose fans are legion. Former New York Mayor and Presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani was among those.
for all he's done for Philadelphia's neighborhoods, and for the welldeserved honor he has received from The Philadelphia Public Record.
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
John H. Estey, Esq. Chairman
James T. McDermott, Jr. Executive Director
Robert C. Blackburn
Senior Deputy Executive Director
John F. Dempsey
Deputy Executive Director GENO VENTO, the son of Public Servant of the Year Joe Vento, takes his turn at hosting. Here he convinces weight-conscious Oprah Winfrey the merits of a Geno’s steak sandwich outweigh extra calories.
“PATH OF HONOR” leads to Joey Vento’s Passyunk Avenue shop Geno’s Steaks. On each of its 115 bricks, the name of a slain Police Officer is inscribed.
Administrative Offices: 3460 N. Delaware Ave. 2nd Fl., Phila., PA 19134 (215) 426-2600 • Fax (215) 426-6800 www.philaport.com
A Perfect Audit! Joe Vento Geno’s Steaks
Public Servant Of The Year 2009
page 10 The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Our Opinion ... Congratulations, Joe Vento No matter what praise we heap on his continued contributions to the welfare and betterment of this city and the many groups in need, it is not enough to truly give one a full picture of the man we all know as Geno Joe. Joe Vento, owner of that venerable and internationally renowned steak shop, has grown into a legend from the sheer force of his continuous contributions aimed at the betterment of all mankind. His defense and demonstration of support for those who serve us as public safety officers is without peer. The thousands who have gained from his generosity, the families of fallen police officers who have had the entire proceeds from a day or weekend of his sales given to them, the scores of schools and charities to which he has given unstintingly and the many righteous causes he has taken on and promulgated make it obvious the Philadelphia Public Record’s selection of Joe Vento as our Public Servant of the Year for 2009 was the perfect choice.
Back The 5 Sitting Judges It is no secret that over the past several primaries, Democratic ward leaders haven’t toed the Party line when it came to supporting judicial candidates. They’ve been able to pick and choose the candidates of their choice while giving some support to the Party’s picks … and get away with it. Unfortunately, in recent elections, more and more of the endorsed Democratic choices for the various judgeships that open almost annually, have found an endorsement didn’t carry them all the way to victory in the primary race. Fortunately, Chairman Bob Brady is a man of his convictions. Those who failed to get the primary support due them from Democratic ward leaders did get judicial appointments. Gov. Ed Rendell appointed them to fill out the term of the vacant seat to which they are nominated. Now the five are being nominated again by Congressman Brady. They are sitting judges. In Municipal Court are Pat Dugan, an Iraq War hero, and Tom Nocella. In Common Pleas are Dan Anders, Angeles Roca and Joyce Eubanks. Those ward leaders who did not do them justice last time, know who they are. Some in that group took “Election Day” money given them by any one or more of the aforementioned judges for additional “insurance”. They did not deliver. This is their opportunity to save face and gain some selfrespect. Deliver the votes in the primary without asking for financial consideration (our nice way of saying, “Keep your hands in your pockets”). It might have been nice to stray from the endorsed ticket in the past, sowing your oats to show your vote-getting prowess. But that could change soon. Brady has addressed the ward leaders, in groups and individually, of late. He’s issued a warning. Play for pay now and you’ll find you’ll be paying back in spades as you lose support for your needs from City Committee or even risk being totally shunned. Brady has demonstrated, though on not enough instances, he has a long memory, and can crack the big stick. It’s obvious he understands his role as chairman and the fact, without unity there can be no efficient movement or growth for the party. Without unity, the Party’s word becomes ineffective. In the end, anarchy rules, with the primaries becoming an unnecessary shooting match. We suggest it is time for ward leaders to accept the responsibility of getting the five sitting judges elected.
Feb. 26- Logan Community Development Corp. holds 1st NAC meeting at Davis Memorial Ch., 4500 N. 10th St., 6:30-8:30 p.m. Feb. 27- Combined 35th & 55th Wards at McCollough Hall, 6309 Torresdale Ave., 711 p.m. For ticket info call Bob Dellavella (215) 335-4004. Mar. 2- Public Record “Public Servant Of The Year” Award, 10th Anniversary Birthday Party at Swan Caterers, 2015 S. Water St., 7-10 p.m. The pre-primary bipartisan political event of the season! Tickets $50. For info call John (267) 259-6654.
Mar. 4- State Rep. Babette Josephs leads meeting on State budget crisis at CCP Lecture Hall Rm. C-228, Ctr. for Business and Industry, 18th & Callowhill Sts., 5:307 p.m. Mar. 4- Phila. Commercial Development Corp. hosts seminar by Melinda Emerson on recession-proofing your business with smart marketing at 1441 Sansom St., Suite 300, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Mar. 7- State Sen. Shirley Kitchen hosts tax-planning seminar at Deliverance Evangelistic Ch., 2001 W. Lehigh Ave., 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Mar. 7- Health Care for All Philadelphians hosts Cong. John Conyers in talk on universal health care at Penn Neumann Ctr., 3720 Chestnut St., 1-3 p.m. Free. For info
call (215) 280-3776. Mar. 7- Teamsters 830, Dan Grace & Chuck White Team, Quartet Club, Southampton Rd. 6-10 p.m. Tickets $30 single, $50 couple. Contact Jim DiVergilis (215) 7680778. Mar. 13- 58th Ward Democrats’ St. Patrick’s Day party at Brook Side Manor, 50 Bustleton Pk., Feasterville, Pa., 8-12 p.m. Tickets $40. For info call Rosemary (215) 964-3140. Mar. 14- Beef & Beer to Elect Judge Pat Dugan at St Dominic's Hall, 8532 Frankford Ave. Donation $30. Call Brian (215) 779-1330. Mar. 16- St. Patty's Day Party hosted by 56th Ward Leader John Sabatina & State Rep. John Sabatina, Jr. at Moriarty's,1116 Walnut St.,
5:30-8:30 p.m. Ticket $50, Friend $100, Patron $250. Mar. 17- St. Patrick’s Day Breakfast with Judge JimmiyLynn, Plough & Stars, 2nd St. above Chestnut, 7:3010:30 a.m. Tickets at door $25. RSVP (215) 686-8330. Mar.18- Neighborhood Networks hosts DA Candidates Forum at Tritone, 1508 South St., 6-8 p.m. For more information, contact Damon K. Roberts (215) 965-1582. Mar. 25- ADA Candidate Questionnaire for DA race at 1st Unitarian Ch., 2125 Chestnut St., 6-8 p.m. Apr. 25- German American Police Association honors Geno’s Joe Vento as Man of Year at Cannstatter Volksfest Verein, 9130 Academy Rd. For details call President Jim Schwartz (856) 236-2286.
Letters • Letters • Letters
No Sales Tax Increase
by State Rep. Bill DeWeese Penna. House Majority Whip The polling data are clear: Pennsylvanians are overwhelmingly against allowing counties to increase their sales tax by 1%. A recent Quinnipiac University Poll cited the opposition at 69-28 statewide. However, like the Commonwealth, local governments are facing budget shortfalls and
need assistance for their coffers. I believe the burgeoning natural-gas drilling industry that is rampant across the state can provide that financial aid without a cost to local taxpayers. Natural gas and coal-bed methane are found with great abundance in our Commonwealth, making untold riches for their owner (wealthy gas companies), but remaining virtually tax-free within our borders. Nearly every state
taxes natural resources; therefore implementing such an assessment would not drive the drilling companies to our neighboring states. There is precedence for such a tax in Pennsylvania, as counties, municipalities and school districts were assessing the tax until December 2002 when the State Supreme Court decided the General Assembly had not explicitly recognized gas and oil as a taxable interest. To correct that oversight, I
will reintroduce legislation in the State House of Representatives to allow counties, municipalities and school districts to assess value on natural gas, oil and coal-bed methane. If the tax is implemented on the mining companies (not local property owners), I believe the money should stay in the local area from which it is derived, rather than be sent to the State's coffers, as proposed last week by Gov. Edward G. Rendell.
Pat DUGAN FOR MUNICIPAL JUDGE - May 19
STATE SEN. Michael Stack hosts these “Presidential Idol Arts Contest winners from 1st through 8th grades.
• Paratrooper - INFANTRY RECON 82nd Airborne (1980’S) • Iraq War Veteran 2004 (SGT Civil Affairs) • Bronze Star, Combat Action Badge, Global War on Terrorism Medal (among many more) • Humanitarian of the Year 2005 for Toy &Vitamin Drive for Iraqi Kids • Helped form one of first-ever Iraqi WOMEN’S Empowerment Groups • Afghanistan Veteran 2006-07 (1LT, JAG Corp) • Philly Mag’s Best Philadelphian 2004 • Appointed Judge in 2007 – has
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
presided over 10,000 cases • Currently a Captain in the US Army Reserves • Child Advocate as a Lawyer • Life-Long Philadelphia Resident • HATES the Dallas Cowboys • Prefer Cheesesteak wiz witout
A TOUGH & FAIR JUDGE www.PATDUGAN.com PAID FOR BY COMMITTEE TO ELECT JUDGE PAT DUGAN, BRIAN COLEMAN TREASURER
A Judge for all the People. Adam M. Beloff, Esquire Beloff & Hope, P.C. e-mail: email@example.com
State Sen. Mike Stack honored nine local students for their award-winning posters depicting their favorite President during a breakfast ceremony. The students were selected from hundreds of entries in “State Sen. Mike Stack’s Presidential Idol Arts Contest.” “All the submissions were fantastic. Our students are so creative and they channeled that energy into their knowledge of history to depict their favorite President,” Stack said. “This is not only a nice way to recognize local students, but it’s also a fun way to celebrate Presidents Day.” Winners and their families were treated to breakfast and received a certificate of achievement and a $100 savings bond. The event also included a Presentation of the Colors from the Veteran Guard, 3rd Regiment Infantry NGP, and the Pledge of Allegiance, led by Col. Siegfried Honig, commander of the Veteran Guard and president of the Philadelphia Flag Day Association. “State Sen. Mike Stack’s Presidential Idol Arts Contest,” which was open to all students in grades K-8 in the 5th Senatorial Dist. and co-sponsored by the Philadelphia Flag Day Association, honored Presidents Day with a theme based on the popular TV singing competition “American Idol.” “The contest is a way to celebrate our Commanders in Chief with the same enthusiasm that we support our favorite contestants on the TV singing competition ‘American Idol’ with,” Stack said. “After all, aren’t our Presidents the original ‘American Idols’?” Students designed posters depicting their Presidential Idol or a general Presidents Day theme. More than 600 students participated. A panel of judges — Joe Garbarino of the Philadelphia University for the Arts, former Congressman Bob Borski and Fox 29 News General Mgr. Mike Renda — selected one winner from each grade.
Stack Fetes Nine Contest Art Winners
page 12 The Public Record • February 26, 2009 www.phillyrecord.com
Well, I’ve had it with Hollywood and the goofballs who think, because they can act, we Americans care about what they think. SEAN PENN, who, of course, won Best Actor for the film Milk (which all of six people bothered to watch), used his Oscar acceptance speech to angrily chastise California voters, including 70% of African Americans, for having the gall to support marriage between one man and one woman. This is the same guy who pals around with and supports Neo-Marxist dictator HUGO CHAVEZ and Communist FIDEL CASTRO (who has murdered thousands of homosexuals, by the way). Hey Sean, shut up and act! Can anyone tell me the last time Hollywood made a positive movie about a soldier, or a businessman, or a priest, or a Christian missionary? This gigantic gray group of wrinkles is tired of the constant stream of leftwing drivel coming from Tinseltown. Make a movie that celebrates the greatness of America and it would make millions of $$$. They can’t bring themselves to do it! And box office receipts continue to plummet. Rant over. Did I read RCC Chairman VITO CANUSO quote in the Legal Intelligencer correctly? Please slap me if I’m seeing things a bit blurry, but consider this excerpt: “Canuso said [DA candidate] MICHAEL UNTERMEYER considered running as a Democrat, but he decided to run as a Republican because Democrats BRIAN GRADY, DAN McCAFFERY, DAN McELHATTON, MICHAEL and SETH WILLIAMS already formed a very crowded field. ‘I think he saw it as a better form to go this route,’ Canuso said.” Once again, Trunk Man notes our leadership has allowed a lifelong Democrat to use our party to run for office because the other side of the ticket is “too crowded”. As of (Cont. Page 24)
When you look at Philadelphia these days, one of the things that still stand out is our crime rate. (That it’s managing to continue to stand out in light of our budget crunch would be impressive were it not so depressing.) In the last few weeks, we’ve had a mother shot in the head as her horrified 4-year-old watched, a Police Officer killed by a thug who told the person he was robbing he’d kill any cops that came calling, and we’ve had at least one drug dealer walk out of Federal prison due to the alleged machinations of a Philadelphia cop. Like I said, it’s kinda depressing. Unfortunately, all of this is unfolding as we get ready for the May primary and the election of a new District Attorney. In case you haven’t heard, current DA Lynne Abraham has decided that she’s had enough of fighting crime (and in some cases the Mayor and City Council) and is stepping down from her seat. (Someone is probably trying to talk her into running for Arlen Specter’s Senate seat as we speak, but you didn’t hear that from me.) So for the next few weeks, I’m going to be talking with the folks who want to take over for Abraham. There are several people running for DA and through this column, you’re going to meet them all. That’s because they have a really tough job ahead of them. I want to know what they’re going to do to help the Police bring the crime rate down. I want to know if they’re going to do something about how long it takes for court (Cont. Page 24)
Yo! Here we go again with this poem about reunions sent to me by my classmate Frank C. It may bring back some memories of your reunion. Ready? Here we go. Every ten years as summertime nears, an announcement arrives in the mail. A reunion is planned: It’ll be really grand; I’ll make plans to attend without fail. I’ll never forget the first time we met; we tried so hard to impress. We drove fancy cars, smoked big cigars and wore our most elegant dress. It was quite an affair; the whole class was there. It was held at a fancy hotel. We wined and we dined and we acted refined. And everyone thought it was swell. The men all conversed about who had been first to achieve great fortune and fame. Meanwhile, their spouses described their fine houses and how beautiful their children became. The homecoming queen, who was once had been lean, now weighed in at one-ninety-six. The jocks that were there had all lost their hair and the cheerleaders could no longer do kicks. No one heard about the class nerd who’d guided a spacecraft to the moon; or poor little Jane who’s always been plain; she married a shipping tycoon. The boy we’d decreed ‘most apt to succeed’ is serving ten years in the pen. While the one voted ‘least’ now was a priest; just shows you can be wrong now and then. They awarded a prize to one of the guys who seemed to have aged the least. Another was given to the grad that had traveled the farthest to attend the feast. They took a class picture, a curious mixture of beehives, crew cuts and wide ties. Tall, short or skinny, the style was the mini; you never saw so many thighs. At our next get-together, no one cared whether they impressed their classmates or not. The mood was informal, a whole lot more normal. By this time we’d all gone to pot. It was held out-of-doors, at the lake shores; we ate hamburgers, coleslaw and beans. Then most of us lay around in the shade in out comfortable T-shirts and jeans. By the fiftieth year, it was abundantly clear, we were definitely over the hill, those who weren’t dead had to crawl out of bed and be home in time for their pill. And now I can’t wait; they’ve set the date: our sixtieth is coming I’m told, it should be a ball. They’ve rented a hall at the shady rest home for the old. Repairs have been made to my hearing aid. My pacemaker’s been turned up on high. My (Cont. Page 24)
Snooper’s EVENT OF THE YEAR: This one is ‘the biggie’! This will happen at SWAN CATERERS, Water & SNYDER Avenue. We hope it’s filled to capacity with our many friends and loyal readers. Yes, it is our 10th Anniversary and we appreciate ALL your support. We will present MR. JOE VENTO, owner and proprietor of GENO’S famous cheesesteaks, as well as his famous large steak sandwiches, with “The Public Servant of The Year” award. JOE is truly an ALL-AMERICAN and he proves this every day. The Public Record and all of its professional staff, including The Snooper, THANK YOU for being a big part of our BIG celebration MONDAY MAR. 2, 7-10 p.m. Snooper’s Special Warning: Hey Chief, how about one from “The Money Guru” HARRY GROSS? He wants to warn all our readers and friends of a resurrected old scam, THE LOTTERY WINNER! This one is really hard not to believe. They send you a letter, telling you about winning thousands of dollars in a ‘foreign’ lottery. Yes, they have a very authentic letterhead from a ‘foreign’ bank, including a check made out to help you pay for a non-resident Government tax on your huge winnings. All you need to do is to send them a couple thousand dollars and they’ll send you your winnings. Remember, anything that sounds this good – isn’t. OK! Snooper’s Travelog: I had the pleasure of stopping into Liberties Restaurant, 705 N. 2nd Street. Here I met one of Municipal Court’s “finest’, HON. PATRICK DUGAN, one of their Judges. The Judge was pleased to see so many of his friends, who were there to help him in his REELECTION to ‘the bench’. “The Captain” wanted to thank all of you, and (Cont. Page 24)
It looks like MIKE McALEER, the ward leader in 66 th A, is now the dean of the Democratic ward leaders in Philadelphia County. Mike has 40 years in of continuous service as a ward leader. His only competition for longevity would be STATE REP. FRANK OLIVER, who probably became a ward leader at the same time as McAleer or shortly thereafter. McAleer is in the Far Northeast in Morrell Park/Parkwood and Oliver is in the Girard College area in the 29 th Ward. A close competitor decided to take emeritus status. That’s NORMAN BERSON, who was the longtime ward leader in the Rittenhouse Square area of Philadelphia. Just last week, long-serving ward leader in the 57 th Ward FRANK CONAWAY stepped down. In the Northeast, Conaway represents the last of a string of Irish American ward leaders who have recently taken emeritus status. It started with FRANK DILLON in 66 th B and continued with VINCE LOWERY in the 55 th Ward (Mayfair), followed by MIKE STACK, who served for 37 years in the Bustleton/Somerton area. He was preceded by CHRIS DRUMM, whose 63 rd Ward includes Pine Valley. Drumm has been replaced by BERNICE HILL; Lowery has been replaced by BOB DELLAVELLA, Vince of happy memory having died recently following a severe heart attack; Mike Stack has been replaced by his son STATE SEN. MIKE STACK, III; Frank Dillon has been replaced by his son SHAWN DILLON. That’s four Irish American ward leaders across the top of the Far Northeast. Sen. Stack has been drawing some attention for the billboard which he maintains on I-95. It is on the northbound side but is visible to southbound drivers. It describes him as the “go-to guy.” This is a reflection of his recent elevation to vice chairman of the minority leadership of the Senate Appropriation Committee. Congratulations to these ward leaders, who have achieved the eminent emeritus status for their years of faithful service to the Democratic Party and to the citizens in their respective wards. Such a fuss is made sometimes about ward leaders, it should be noted they serve without pay. Does that make Bob Dellavella the youngest ward leader? It’s either him or STEPHANIE SINGER of the 8 th Ward.
JOINING festivities at Downey’s for 1st Ward gala were, from left, John Sabatina, Fran Shields, Bill Dolbow, Tucker Mullen, Bob Dellavella, Hoffman, and Councilmen Bill Green and Frank DiCicco.
VETERAN committeeman Nick Armata enjoys company of fellow committee members Mae Boland and daughter-inlaw ReeRee Boland.
1ST WARD committee persons were well represented by Richard COMMITTEEMAN Thomas Rhumba shares a Conway, Rose Magliocco, Rose campaign secret with Judge Dan Anders at DiRenzo and Michael Barisher. Downey’s gala.
GETTING TOGETHER with host 1st Ward Leader Joe Hoffman, from left, are John Avicolli, Sr. and his son John, and Dawn Segal.
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
SHARING moment with their host 1st Ward Democratic leader Joe Hoffman, Sr., right, are Ward Leaders John Sabatina and Roseanne Pauciello, Judicial candidate Joe Murphy and Linda Colavito.
1st Ward Packs Downey’s
JOE Hoffman, Jr., and Joe Hoffman, Sr., flank Lou DiRenzo and State Sen. Lawrence Farnese at 1st Ward Gala.
Academy Of Music Marks 152nd Year Of Service
AT PRESIDENT’S Reception for Academy Ball held at AMONG concertgoers who enjoyed Philadelphia Orchestra Park Hyatt at the Bellevue, were Carl & Karen Buchholz MAYOR Michael and Lisa Nutter enjoyed concert and unand James Taylor’s performance are First Lady Judge Marand Connie & Ambassador to Austria David Girard-Di- veiling of renovated historic chandelier in Academy of jorie O. Rendell and Gov. Ed Rendell. Photo by Bonnie Squires Photo by Bonnie Squires Music. Photo by Bonnie Squires Carlo.
Chatting ‘N Chewing With Councilwoman Miller
MARGUERITE Lenfest, co-chair of Academy Concert and Ball, welcomes Dwight Evans and his guest for Photo by Bonnie Squires evening.
ANNUAL “Chat and Chew” held by Councilwoman drew candidates and friends. Here with Councilwoman Donna Reed Miller are Nathan Thomas, Michael Quintero-Moore, WITH COUNCILWOMAN Donna Reed Ward Leader Vernon Price and Nate Miller, left, are State Sen. LeAnna Washington, center, and Judge Joyce Eubanks. Howard.
OWNER of Nicole Miller shop in Park Hyatt, Mary Dougherty, hosted a reception after Academy of Music concert featuring Blythe Danner and maestro Christoph Eschenbach. Here she is seen with Beth & Dan Fitzpatrick, CEO of Citizens Bank, and Rebecca Campbell, president of WABC-TV in New York, formerly of WPVI-TV Photo by Bonnie Squires in Philly.
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Kitchen Lauds Summary-Removal Law State Sen. Shirley Kitchen is applauding the approval of a new law that will give individuals the opportunity to remove summary offenses from their criminal record expediently. “This is a significant step in the right direction for giving individuals with minor offenses a second chance,” Kitchen said. “Too
often, individuals who make a mistake and want to be a productive and employed member of society continue to be punished because of their past. This new law will help them move forward with their lives.” Act 134, which goes into effect in late January and signed by Gov. Rendell on Nov. 26, allows individuals
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PHILA. Parking Authority continues to draw ever increasing crowds to its tri-weekly auction. Recessionminded bidders continue to drive off with hot bargains. Here early crowd lines up to register for weekly Thursday auction at PPA facility on Essington Avenue. Other locations and times can be seen in PPA ad elsewhere this edition.
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with summary offenses to request their local court expunge an offense from their criminal record five years after they completed their sentence. Summary offenses include crimes like disorderly conduct and shoplifting. Prior to the new law, an individual’s criminal-history information could have been accessed by anyone upon request to the State Police, regardless of whether they are employed by a criminal-justice agency. As a longtime advocate for second-chance legislation, Kitchen has fought to provide nonviolent ex-offenders better opportunities to get their lives back on track. “The passage of this legislation would not have been possible without the many advocates and organizations that have worked with my office for more than five years to produce secondchance legislation, most notably Sharon Dietrich from Community Legal Services in Philadelphia,” Kitchen said. “Whether it was lobbying legislators or attending Capitol rallies, CLS and the other numerous organizations and agencies have made such an effort to bring to light the conditions affecting ex-offenders. I thank them for keeping this important issue in the spotlight.”
Marvin Barrish Back “On Air” Political expert Marvin Barrish is back on the air. This time he’s on WIFI 1060 AM. He’ll be airing interviews with political candidates every Sunday, 23 p.m., from Mar. 1 to May 17. His first five weekly guests are Judge Paula Patrick, Diane Thompson, Judge Joyce Eubanks, Beverly Muldrow and Sharon Losier.
JUDGE Pat Dugan, AOH Division 51 member Fred Druding, Jr. and DA candidate Dan McCaffery congratulate Seamus Boyle on his recent election to National AOH president.
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
AOH Division 51 member Fred Druding, Jr. welcomes AOH National President Seamus Boyle to AOH/LAOH Division 51’s sixth annual Communion Breakfast at Holy Name of Jesus Parish in Fishtown.
Hibernians Honor Boyle
PAST AOH/LAOH Division 51 Presidents Jay & Cherryl McCarrie were honored for their years of service at communion breakfast by AOH Division 51 DA CANDIDATE Dan McCaffery President Phil Bowdren and LAOH Division 51 Pres- is greeted by AOH Division 51 President Phil Bowdren. ident Betty Ann Whitsell.
page 16 The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Upstairs Race Will Fight Asthma
and the general public will attempt to climb all 50 flights of the Bell Atlantic Tower, 1717 Arch Street, to raise money and awareness for the American Lung Association in Pennsylvania. At the top, participants will be able to enjoy a view of the Philadelphia skyline and a finish-line party complete with food, bever-
One step at a time – 1,088 steps – is how participants plan to advocate for lung health on Saturday, Mar. 21 when they take part in the 3rd annual ‘Climb the Tower" event in Philadelphia. First responders, athletes
ages, music and an awards ceremony. The event starts at 8 a.m. and is sponsored by NOW 97.5 FM, UnitedHealthcare, and K.D. Financial Services. Climbers, who will start 15 seconds apart, will be awarded by age group, gender and fastest time. "This is not your typical
5K race," said Michael Melcher, manager of special events for ALAPA. "Instead of walking around in circles – we're going vertical – and contrary to what many people think, walking up more than 1,000 steps can be done," he said. "If you can walk three miles, you can climb 1,088 steps in about 20 minutes."
UT O B A ASK ULL OUR F R A 30 YE TEE AN GUAR
LICE N INSU SED REGI RED STER FR ED ROO EE ESTIM FIN AT E RTIF S ICAT E
Registration fee for the Climb is $25. Participants must raise $100. For more information on participating,
donating or volunteering, visit www.phillystairclimb.lunginfo.org or call Michael Melcher at (610) 941-9595.
by Michael A. Cibik, Esquire American Bankruptcy Board Certified
trust, and debts you owe under a divorce decree or settlement, unless after bankruptcy you would still not be able to afford to pay them or the benefit you’d receive by the discharge outweighs any detriment to your ex-spouse (who would have to pay them if you discharge them in bankruptcy). Next week’s question: Am I going to lose my personal property if I file bankruptcy?
Question: Are there other debts that are also non-dischargeable under the new bankruptcy law? Answer: Yes, debts you incurred on the basis of fraud, such as lying on a credit application; credit purchases of $500 or more for luxury goods or services made within 90 days of filing; loans or cash advances of $750 or more taken within 70 days of filing; debts from willful or malicious injury to another person or another person’s property; debts from embezzlement, larceny or breach of
PUBLIC RECORD Call John 215-755-2000 Attorneys are both board certified by the American Bankruptcy Certification Board.
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operates above politics and focuses only on the highest standard of ethical conduct.” Newly elected House Speaker Keith McCall, said he believes Manderino is the perfect choice to chair the committee. “One of my goals as speaker is to help restore the public’s faith and trust in state government,” McCall said. “There is no lawmaker more
Ringside With The Shadowboxer
suited to lead that charge and stand up for the people than Kathy Manderino in her role as Ethics Committee chair. Her integrity and dedication is absolute, and she’ll do an outstanding job in this important role.” While focusing on her new role on the Committee on Ethics, Manderino has also been appointed to the Appropriations, Judiciary, Insurance, Health and Human Services, and Intergovernmental Affairs committees.
Rep. Cruz Named To 4th Committee House Speaker Keith McCall has appointed State Rep. Angel Cruz to serve on a fourth House committee. In addition to his recent appointment to the House Commerce, Consumer Affairs and Liquor Control committees, Cruz will also serve on the House Tourism & Recreational Development Committee for the 2009-10 legislative session. Cruz noted his appointment to the tourism commit-
tee is of particular importance because Philadelphia is a leader in Pennsylvania’s tourism industry. “I look forward to working on legislation that will benefit my constituents through my membership on this committee,” Cruz said. “This appointment will allow me to work on issues that can bring jobs and economic growth to Philadelphia.” This week, Cruz introduced legislation that would
require advertised goods or services for sale at retail to include the amount of the sales tax in the total price for the goods or services. “Many times, people do not realize how much they are really spending on taxed items until they are checking out,” Cruz said. “My bill would require retailers to be up front about the total costs so there would be no surprises for consumers.”
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
State Rep. Kathy Manderino has been appointed chair of the House Committee on Ethics for the 2009-10 legislative session. “I am very happy and honored to lead the House Ethics Committee in the upcoming legislative session,” Manderino said. “This is a unique committee that is comprised of an equal number of Republicans and Democratic members. It
Rep. Manderino Heads Ethics
Costello Boxing Club Keeps Punching! This week SHADOWBOXER takes a look at the Jack Costello Boxing Club which opened its doors in 1994, and continues to make a positive impact on many youngsters in the Philadelphia area. The club is named in honor of the late Jack Costello, a local promoter and Pennsylvania Boxing Hall of Fame inductee. The nonprofit organization is located at 4900 Longshore Avenue in the Tacony section of the city. The gym has produced several boxing champions, competed all over the Philadelphia area and even traveled to face the Sacred Heart Boxing Club of Northern Ireland. World-rated professional boxers such as Glenwood “The Real Beast” Brown have trained at the gym and former Philadelphia boxers such as Anthony “TKO” Boyle and “Irish” Brian McGinley continue to share what they have learned in the ring with the gym’s young boxers. The gym’s main purpose is to get the kids into boxing and off the streets and mold them into mature adults. On Saturday, Feb. 28, the Costello Boxing Club will hold a Beef-and-Beer fundraiser at the Plumber’s Union Hall on Southampton Road at 7 p.m. Proceeds will enable the club to continue to do the good work it started 15 years ago.
page 18 The Public Record • February 26, 2009 www.phillyrecord.com
PRPA Adds Sonar For Security The Port of Philadelphia is more secure as the result of a purchase of a portable sonar system by the Philadelphia Regional Port Authority. The equipment will permit its users to track suspicious movements underwater and will be especially useful during times of poor visibility. The equipment can also be used to locate vehicles and other objects that may accidentally enter the river and sink. To insure future efficient operation of the equipment, according to PRPA Executive Director James T. McDermott, an interagency agreement was put in place to address its maintenance and repair issues. It is now in the full-time custody of the Philadelphia Police Marine Unit. PRPA has already conducted a five day training course to familiarize those first responders to Port emergen-
Revenue Employees Sick Easily
MEMBERS of Penna. and New Jersey State Police and Philadelphia Police Marine Unit examine sonar unit purchased by PRPA. Director of Operations James Walsh, 2nd from right, coordinated training on new sonar equipment. cies. Attending were members of Philadelphia Police Marine Unit and the Pennsylvania and New Jersey State Police. PRPA Director of Operations James Walsh and his Operations Dept., who conducted the training, said, “Lt. Andy Napoli and the other members
of the Philadelphia Marine Unit were invaluable to the training by allowing those trained to utilize its boats for field exercises.” The PRPA is scheduled to purchase a second sonar unit, to be utilized primarily by the Pennsylvania State Police.
Wonder why you keep getting bills from the City when you have your cancelled checks to show you paid? Maybe City Controller Alan Butkovitz has found the answer after auditing the Dept. of Revenue for FY 207 and 2006. It shows the City is losing money due to deficiencies and weaknesses within the Department. As a result of the Revenue Dept.’s failure to enforce the City’ s sick-leave rules and regulations, the Controller found nine of 19 sample employees out of a total of 498 employees to have been wrongly compensated for sick leave they were not entitled to. “It is highly disturbing that we found the Department failed to enforce the sick leave for almost half of the sampled employees, and they were being compensated for sick leave they were not entitled to,” said Butkovitz. “This ongoing failure to enforce and comply with our existing sick leave requirements could potentially result in hundreds of thousands of dollars a year,” Butkovitz said. The audit also found the Revenue Dept. has failed to put in place a mechanism to independently check postings to the City’s electronic payroll system that can result in incorrect payments to employees and the reinstatement of leave balances as well. The report recommended an independent employee be assigned to conduct periodic testing and comparisons of daily attendance records to electronic payroll system postings. The report also found the Water Revenue Bureau failed to use 26 new computers valued at $25,000 that were in storage for four months. “Not using expensive computer equipment that could help employees better perform their duties is a waste of taxpayers’ money and employee time,” said Butkovitz. “If not being used by the WBR, it should be reported to the Procurement Dept. so it can be made available for use by other departments.”
waterfront. The DRWC will adopt the Sunshine Act, meaning its operations will be open, transparent, and accountable to the public, another recommendation from the Action Plan. Board meetings will be open, financial report, annual reports, and all other information will be published on the new DRWC w e b s i t e : www.DelawareRiverWaterfrontCorporation.com. Ex-officio Directors include its Chairman Andrew Altman Commerce director and deputy mayor for planning and economic development; Alan Greenberger, executive director, Philadelphia City Planning Commission; and Bill Wilson, Principal-in-Charge, Synterra Ltd. Mayoral Appointees are Rina Cutler, deputy mayor for transportation and public util-
ities; Diane Dalto Woosnam, chairman of Pennsylvania Council on the Arts; Avi Eden, consultant with a background in finance and law; Terry Gillen, executive director of Redevelopment Authority and senior advisor to the Mayor for economic development; Jay Goldstein, president of Valley Green Bank; Bill Hankowsky, head of Liberty Property Trust Michael Hauptman, AIA, partner at
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Sunoco Plans To Cut 25% of Key Staff, Union Issues Community Safety Alarm There’s trouble brewing at the Sunoco refinery located in South Philadelphia. To the 700-plus employees of the refinery, the operation seems to be hell-bent on turning their world upside down. Four hundred of them are operators, essential to keeping the refinery working and safe. They work 12-hour shifts, in staggered days off. There are 13 processing units stretched over three square miles. Now Sunoco has decided to lay off 100 of them and they are doing so quickly. That has Jim Savage, president of Local 10-1 United Steel Workers, crying foul. So much so, his union has put up a billboard near the Sunoco refinery that shows a refinery burning away, with the message “Don’t Let this Happen Here!, Demand Safe Refinery Staffing Levels at Sunoco. 1-800-SUNOCO1.” Savage was informed by
the company in negotiations this week it intends to reduce expenses by cutting the operations work force 25%, reducing the operators by 100. There is no intent to reduce production, and that is what worries Savage. He says, “Our members and negotiating committee intend to fight for every job in our refinery. Too many of our members in operations can’t get a day off now. Sunoco’s stated intentions are highly irresponsible in our opinion.” What has employees especially rankled is the fact the Refinery’s new CEO, Lynn Laverty Elsenhans, has been awarded $14.7 million in stock options since Aug. 2, 2008. The CEO she replaced was getting around $10 million a year, stated a Local official. The refinery is one of a handful of refineries that have not signed on to the National Oil Bargaining Pattern Settlement, which did give raises. Despite a recession every-
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where else in the US, Sunoco, Inc. reported a net income of $204 million for the fourth quarter of 2008. Eisenhans stated, “We expect a challenging market. However, we will focus on maintaining our financial flexibility through the disciplined execution of our capital program, improvement in our cost structure and the active pursuit of opportunities to create value within our portfolio of assets.” On Feb. 3, two employees suffered injuries from an explosion at the refinery. Attempts to reach Sunoco for comment brought no response at press deadline time. Today Sunoco’s Steel Workers will rally at City Hall at 4 p.m., and then march from there to Sunoco HQ at 18th & Market Streets to sound the alarm over their concern the unnecessary cuts in necessary manpower could create a strong potential for serious accidents.
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The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Penn’s Landing Corp. has been tossed into the trash bin of “unfinished dreams” by Mayor Michael A. Nutter and rebaptized as the Delaware River Waterfront with a new board. The establishment of the DRWC achieves the objectives outlined by PennPraxis, in conjunction with the Central Delaware Advocacy Group, in An Action Plan for the Central Delaware: 20082018. The Action Plan calls for the establishment of an “open, accountable, effective waterfront manager,” a reformed Penn’s Landing Corp. with the powers to rapidly and effectively transform the riverfront. The establishment of the DRWC achieves just that. The DRWC will be dedicated to the planning, design, development, and management of the central Delaware
DRWC Advances PennPraxis Waterfront Plans
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Jake’s, 22, has new, lower-priced sister by Len Lear In my basement “archives” (cardboard boxes that are falling apart under the weight of so many newspaper and magazine articles), I just found a copy of an article I wrote for a local weekly early in 1988 about Jake’s, a few months after that iconic Manayunk restaurant opened at 4365 Main St. “Jake’s,” I wrote, “is part of the Society Hill-ization of that hilly part of town that was a bastion of blue-collarism just a few years ago.” Owner/chef Bruce Cooper, 54, a 1974 graduate of the Culinary Institute of America whose previous culinary experience was catering and working in the Lankenau Hospital kitchen, opened Jake’s on Oct. 17, 1987, the day of the biggest
one-day stock m a r k e t plunge in history up to that point — 150 points. (Such a drop these days would produce little more than a yawn.) Cooper, a resident of Conshohocken, picked up the 3,000-square-foot, two-story storefront for a bargain basement price just before Manayunk real-estate values shot into the stratosphere. From day one, Jake’s was a critical and popular success story, an annual fixture on the Zagat Dining Guide’s list of the area’s 10 best restaurants as well as a catalyst for the transformation of Manayunk into a popular shopping and restaurant district. Jake’s has always been pricey, however, and it’s no secret that even before the recent economic meltdown, more and more diners were looking for restaurant bargains, and even palaces of
gastronomy like Lacroix and Le Bec Fin have responded by offering optional threecourse, $35 dinners on the grounds that even a small profit is better than a room full of empty seats. In the case of Jake’s, customers now have the option of bringing their own wine. In addition, Cooper took over the next door property (4367 Main Street), which had previously housed a Chico’s clothing store, and after a five-month renovation (Jake’s renovation had only taken one month) that included breaking through the wall that separated the two properties, opened Cooper’s Brick Oven Wine Bar on Labor Day last year. “I was putting in 90-hour weeks when we opened,” said Bruce. “Now I take Sundays off and maybe a Tuesday night.” Cooper has obviously responded to the more casual, less pricey Zeitgeist of the post-economic meltdown.
Len Lear Almost all entrees are $15 or under; there are 20 bottles of wine under $40, 30 wines by-the-glass and 20 craft beers in Jake’s 60-seat sister (counting the bar). “One thing Restaurant Week taught me,” said Bruce, “is you can have less on each check and a lot more customers, and that works out fine. When I started drinking at my own bar, I realized how expensive wine is. That’s when I decided to make Jake’s BYOB optional.” Although it’s right next door and connected by a
foyer, Cooper’s has a whole different vibe from Jake’s. Cooper’s has many more entrées than Jake’s, and it does not take reservations. “Most customers are keeping their entrées under $15,” said Cooper. “I could not sell $20 entrees there (in Cooper’s) if I wanted to.” One thing customers have observed over the years about Jake’s (and now Cooper’s) is the consistency of the product and preparation, due in large part to the fact Cooper’s chef, Abdoulaye Soumah (from Guinea), and pastry chef, Debbie Tonsey, have both been with him for 15 years, highly unusual in the restaurant business. As we expected, the dishes we had at Cooper’s were of the highest quality and reasonably priced — beef short rib entree with polenta gnocchi and baby carrot ($14); fire-roasted onion pizza with roasted pepper-tomato sauce, goat
cheese, black olives and grilled radicchio ($13); and an outrageous dessert of profiteroles with fudge, caramel and pecan ice cream with chantilly cream ($8). There are some enticing entrée salads, cheese plates and an impressive charcuterie platter. Our server, Marco, was excellent. Cooper’s does not take reservations, and on weekend nights there may be a wait of up to 30 minutes. One problem for people who go to Manayunk restaurants is invariably the difficulty in finding a place to park. It rivals Center City in this regard. Cooper has solved this dilemma by providing free parking in the lot behind the restaurant (access from Main and Levering Streets), which usually costs $12. For more information on Cooper’s, call (215) 483-2750 or visit www.jakesrestaurant.com.
CBTU - COALITION OF BLACK TRADE UNIONISTS Southeastern Pennsylvania and Greater Philadelphia Chapter Coalition of Black Trade Unionists, presents its
Saturday March 21, 2009 TIOGA’S 11th Ward Leader Al Stewart, center, along with V. Tutie Fields and Verna Tyner, oversees petition meeting attended by committee persons and judicial candidates with petitions to sign.
Honoring Former President Bernard Fisher Crowne Plaza Hotel - 1800 Market Street - Philadelphia PA ATTENDING with their nominating petitions were, in photo at left, Joe Waters, Controller Alan Butkovitz, Diane Thompson and Maurice Floyd. At right are Judges Joyce Eubanks, V. Tutie Fields, Angeles Roca and Pat Dugan.
Mummers Honor Brady, Chorus
CHARLES BERNARD accepts Mummers Award for Congressman Bob Brady, who saved New Year's Parade on Broad Street and "2" Street! Fred Druding, Sr. gave award before overflow crowd at Weccacoe Community Development Corp.
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
4th Annual SemiFormal Night of Elegance
…In The 11th Ward
Cocktail Reception (Cash Bar) 6-7 PM Dinner 7:00 PM Dancing to Follow Donation $75.00 Dress – Semi Formal Portions of all proceeds will go to the Philadelphia Chapter CBTU Scholarship Fund WECCACOE Community Liaison Fred Druding, Jr. presents “King Momus” award to Phila. Mummers Chorus led by Director Joe Shubert. Group performs at many, if not all, mummers’ functions throughout year.
Please make check or money order payable to CBTU Southeastern PA Chapter, and mail to P. O. Box 42536, Philadelphia PA 19101 The ticket deadline is Saturday, March 7, 2009. Absolutely no tickets will be sold at the door. For more information you can contact Michele Mills at 215-735-1300
SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PHILADELPHIA Sealed proposals will be received by the School Reform Commission at the School Administration Building located at 440 North Broad St., 3rd Floor, Office of Capital Programs, Philadelphia, PA 191304015, until 2:00 P.M., on Tuesday, March 17, 2009. A non-refundable fee for each set of bid documents is as scheduled. The School District will only accept bids from companies that have been placed on its current Pre Qualified Contractors List as shown at psit.org. All School District Project require MBE/WBE participation as shown in the specifications.
B- 025 IT of 2008/09*
ADVANCE NOTICE Auction-Real Estate and Antiques Sunday March 8th - 10 AM on Site
Million Dollar Inventory 2 Stores and Warehouse Full of Fine Antiques, Art and Collectables!!! 116-118 N. High St. Millville NJ
Wednesday March 11, 2009 10 Commercial Real Estate Property Camden 18 Large Home Center Auction MArch 19 N. E. Phila Corner Property
*A pre-bid conference and site tour will be held on February 25, 2009 at 10:00 am at the Julia DeBurgos School 401 West Lehigh Avenue, Philadelphia PA 19133 B- 026 IT of 2008/09*
Mechanical Contract Various Locations $700,000.00 New IT Core Site Room throughout the School District
*A pre-bid conference and site tour will be held on February 25, 2009 at 10:00 am at the Julia DeBurgos School 401 West Lehigh Avenue, Philadelphia PA 19133 B- 026 IT of 2008/09*
Mechanical Contract Various Locations $1,100,000.00 New IT Core Site Room throughout the School District
*A pre-bid conference and site tour will be held on February 25, 2009 at 10:00 am at the Julia DeBurgos School 401 West Lehigh Avenue, Philadelphia PA 19133 Specifications and/or plans and contract documents may be examined and copies thereof obtained from the School Reform Commission, 440 North Broad Street, 3rd floor, Philadelphia, PA 19130. Information as to contract documents, etc., may be obtained at the above address, or telephone 215-4005225. Make checks payable to the School District of Philadelphia. The School Reform Commission reserves the right to reject any and all bids and make the awards to the best interests of the School District of Philadelphia.
BUDGET General Contract Various Locations $150,000.00 New IT Core Site Room throughout the School District
page 22 The Public Record • February 26, 2009
CITY OF PHILADELPHIA Public Hearing Notice The Committee on Public Property and Public Works of the Council of the City of Philadelphia will hold a Public Hearing Tuesday, March 3, 2009, at 10:00 AM, in Room 400, City Hall, to hear testimony on the following item: 090003 An Ordinance authorizing the extension of the extended trial program authorized by Bill No. 060799 under which advance approval is given to the Philadelphia Facilities Management Corporation to enter into certain contracts and transactions arising thereunder for the purchase, storage, distribution, transportation and/or transmission of natural and other gas on behalf of the Philadelphia Gas Works, subject to certain terms and conditions. Immediately following the public hearing, a meeting of the Committee on Public Property and Public Works, open to the public, will be held to consider the action to be taken on the above listed item. Copies of the foregoing item are available in the Office of the Chief Clerk of the Council, Room 402, City Hall.
Patricia Rafferty Chief Clerk
CITY OF PHILADELPHIA Public Hearing Notice The Committee on Commerce & Economic Development of the Council of the City of Philadelphia will hold a Public Hearing Wednesday, March 4, 2009, at 9:00 AM, in Room 400, City Hall, to hear testimony on the following item:
090095 An Ordinance amending Title 17 of The Philadelphia Code, entitled “Contracts and Procurement,” by creating new requirements relating to the submission of an Economic Opportunity Plan. Immediately following the public hearing, a meeting of the Committee on Commerce & Economic Development, open to the public, will be held to consider the action to be taken on the above listed item. Copies of the foregoing item are available in the Office of the Chief Clerk of the Council, Room 402, City Hall.
Patricia Rafferty Chief Clerk
Laborers Host Kids At 76ers Game The Philadelphia LaborersEmployers Cooperation Education Trust of the Laborers’ International Union of North America will host the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southestern Pennsylvnia at the Philadelphia 76ers game this Saturday. “We are glad to donate our box at the Wachovia Center for the Philadelphia 76ers game to the mentors and childen of Big Brothers, Big Sisters,” said Samuel Staten, Jr. Staten, who is LECET trustee and business manager of Laborers’ Local Unon 332, added, “Big Brothers, Big Sisters improves the lives of the children in our community and we are proud to be a part
of it.” LECET is the marketing arm of the Laborers’ District Council of the Metropolitan Area of Philadelphia and Vicinity, representing Locals 57, 135, 332 and 413. LECET brings LIUNA and its signatory contractors together to address issues of importance to both. Laborers and their employers share a lot of common ground. Working as a team, they secure projects and jobs, increase union-sector market share, advertise their services, develop a workforce, and advance shared market-related interests. One of LIUNA’s three cooperative labor-management Tri-Funds, LECET is similar
to a trade association. It looks down the road, sees where the construction industry is going, then musters the resources of LIUNA and the Tri-Funds to position Laborers and their signatory contractors to make the most of the future. It works closely with leading industry organizations on issues of importance to the entire industry such as transportation funding, market-related legislation, marketing strategies, and workforce development. Philadelphia LECET is affiliated with LIUNA National LECET that consists of one national office, located in Washington, D.C., and a network of 31 regional, state and local funds. For info visit www.LECET.org.
CITY OF PHILADELPHIA Public Hearing Notice The Committee on Finance of the Council of the City of Philadelphia will hold a Public Hearing Tuesday, March 10, 2009, at 1:00 PM, in Room 400, City Hall, to hear testimony on the following items: 090007 An Ordinance amending Section 19-203 of The Philadelphia Code, entitled “Payroll Deductions,” to add the Friends of the Free Library Philadelphia to the list of designated payees to whom an employee may direct payroll deductions; all under certain terms and conditions. 090016 An Ordinance amending Title 13 of The Philadelphia Code, entitled “Water and Sewer,” by amending Section 13-101, which provides standards for the setting of water rates and charges, by amending the provisions establishing special rates and charges designated as “charity water rates and charges” and as “public housing water rates and charges,” and by amending Section 13201, which provides standards for the setting of sewer rates and charges, by amending the provisions establishing special rates and charges designated as “charity sewer rates and charges,” as “public housing sewer rates and charges,” and as “Federal facilities rates and charges,” all under certain terms and conditions. Immediately following the public hearing, a meeting of the Committee on Finance, open to the public, will be held to consider the action to be taken on the above listed items. Copies of the foregoing items are available in the Office of the Chief Clerk of the Council, Room 402, City Hall.
Patricia Rafferty Chief Clerk
“Son of Stimulus”, which he believes will be enacted when the first stimulus package fails. Turzanski offered a sobering fact many great triumphs, including World War II, the Korean War, 9/11 Total Assistance, the Louisiana Purchase, the Panama Canal, the Manhattan Project, the Marshall Plan and NASA’s Apollo Missions, in today’s dollars, would be in excess of $10 trillion. He opined ways to improve the economy, including a
three-month Federal tax holiday; an offset of all payroll taxes paid; reducing corporate taxes, as in Ireland; a hands-off approach to free enterprise; work for energy security – not dependence; and most importantly, preserving free speech. Hot-button topics of card check and the Fairness Doctrine were briefly mentioned. All was not gloom and doom. Turzanski said, “The time has come for the Party to fight intelligently and with
smiles, and be the party of hope and optimism. This GOP miasma did not happen overnight and will not disappear overnight, but will require courage, tenacity and follow through as a long and difficult road lies ahead.” He gave homage to the astute minds of Richardson Dilworth and Joe Clark, the Democratic team that singlehandedly chipped away at the strong Republican Party that had been in power for 66 years.
WELCOMING guest speaker Professor Ed Turzanski, 2nd from right, to Republican Loyal Opposition forum are Hillel Levinson, Beth Hegedus, Wally Zimolong, and Kevin Kelly.
The Public Record • February 26, 2009 www.phillyrecord.com
by Beth Hegedus The Philadelphia Republican Party may not have won major elections in years, but that didn’t matter to the overflow crowd of varying ages, socioeconomic backgrounds, and Philadelphia as well as collar county Republican loyalists and rank-and-file activists that attended the recent meeting of “The Loyal Opposition of Philadelphia”, a group whose primary mission is to advance the Republican principles of representative government and see it is responsive to the needs of the citizens through loyal and public-spirited opposition to the status quo. Chairman Marc Collazzo said, “I never knew there were so many Republicans in Philadelphia,” and added, “We need to be a part of the party, and will attain our goal through empathy, attention and ideas.” “We’re here because we have similar ideas yet different styles. What unites us is we don’t want to hear problems or causes; we want to find solutions,” noted Kevin Kelly, vice chairman. Keynote speaker Ed Turzanski, senior fellow, Foreign Policy Research Institute and assistant VP, government and community relations, LaSalle University, enthralled the crowd with his knowledge, concerns, fears, but also hope and optimism. This was not a sugarcoated speech, rather a call to action as he warned the Obama administration wants to do harm to our constitution. “It’s almost like the Catacombs, where Christians met secretly to hear Mass. Not quite, but pretty close,” said Turzanski, with a combined note of sincerity and fear that permeated the audience. He told the group Republican messages need to be concise and focus on real issues. His message resonated they have lost hold of political discourse as well as government oversight. Examples included the Bernie Madoff scandal, as well as Congressman Barney Frank, Sen. Chris Dodd and the banking problems. A chuckle, however, went through the room when Turzanski told about the new and exciting summer event coming:
Republicans Rally To A New Cause
The Public Record • February 26, 2009
Out & About (Cont. From Page 12) cases to wind themselves down. I want to know if they’re going to actually put together a proper witness-protection program.
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Snooper (Cont. From Page 12) he won’t let you down! Please don’t forget this JUDGE when you go to VOTE. SNOOPER’S SPECIAL MESSAGE: TO all THE MEN and WOMEN “IN BLUE”. I know just how you’re feeling, and I sympathize with all of you. Yes, six POLICE OFFICERS killed in less than 15 months; that’s too many. I, for one, appreciate all you do, and do it every day. I want you to know WE CARE and we know you’ll keep doing what you do best protecting us! I don’t have the answers you’re looking for, after all, look at all THE SCUM who care less about you, and would kill you in a heartbeat – SHAME. God Bless You! Snooper Sightings: Hon. Nick Stampone had a lot of friends who came by the Galzerano Funeral Home and paid their respects to his great family. Congressman Bob Brady; Supreme Court Justice Hon. Seamus McCaffery; Judge Fay Stack and her prolific, wellknown author husband, Mike Stack, Esq.; Tony Carmen;
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his great friend and Councilwoman Hon. Joan Krajewski were in their number. Yes, State Sen. Nicholas Stampone, at 82 years of age, is gone! Snooper Wants To Know: What’s wrong with this picture? Another cop is killed. Your Mayor wants to cut our POLICE FORCE. Why not just declare open season on crime? People, we need to take back the streets. Yes cuts must be made. OH! Here is a suggestion or two. Have our Mayor cut his personal staff. Cut the WIFI, it’s not working, also it’s CZAR. Please get rid of that farce, 311. Just by doing this we can keep more Police and Firemen to protect our property and lives. Mr. Nutter is a good Mayor, he just has his priorities screwed up. HEADS UP: If a police officer
Waffleman (Cont. From Page 12) wheelchair is oiled, and my teeth have been boiled and I’ve bought a new wig and glass eye. I’m feeling quite hearty and I’m ready to party – I’m gonna dance in dawn’s early light. It’ll be lots of fun, I just hope that there’s one other person that can make it that night. Does this touch a nerve? It certainly is a real picture to me. Thanks Frank, I hope to see you at our sixtieth in 2017 – I’m planning on it. I got it marked on my calendar. See ya there!
tells you to FREEZE, you had better do what he tells you, or you might get yourself SHOT. You would have no one to BLAME but YOURSELF, period! Snooper’s Updates Files: I received a lot of Emails regarding The D.A.’S warning about those phonies who are still out there selling ‘ILLEGAL HOMES’. I’m sorry, I forgot to give you the phone number to call if it does happens to you. Please call The Economic Crime Complaint Unit at (215) 686-9901. Leave a message! Snooper’s Scholar bureau: How about JOSEPH McDERMOTT III, from ARCHBISHOP RYAN? Yes, he was just named an ALL STAR, ALL CATHOLIC, in BOWLING.
His Mom and Dad Patricia & Joseph McDermott, Jr. are so proud of him. Hey, I’m told he even beat “the old man” in a bowling match. Joe’s buddies Timmy Frehling and Danny Pettit can’t wait to get him.
of Democrats. However, this sort of maneuver is a political fact of life for Elephants who are facing a huge voter-registration deficit. In the long run, the City Party can only make gains by flipping Democrats into Republicans. So maybe Vito and canny old MICHAEL MEEHAN aren’t as crazy as they look. I just hope this courting of Untermeyer won’t undermine the efforts of one of our best Controller candidates in decades, AL SCHMIDT. Someone had to say it, peanut-poppers; might as well be the guy with the 2-inch thick skin. Keep on trunkin’, gang. See ya!
(Cont. from Page 12) the writing of this article, Mr. Untermeyer, who does have a good reputation, is still a registered Democrat! City Committee was unable to field a Republican candidate for DA despite four full years to find one, and is now allowing a career Donkey to advance his own political agenda. They were unable to find a Republican DA candidate in a town ranking among the highest in murder; one that has buried seven of our brave Police Officers in the last 18 months and where responsibility for safety falls squarely at the feet
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The Public Record â€˘ February 26, 2009
page 26 The Public Record • February 26, 2009
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Italy and France. “The Italians and the French have art on their roads. Art is subsidized all over Europe.” He took art classes but was mostly selftaught with the guidance of his father. “When you grow up in a house with art, it’s like being
Artist Carl LeVotch in a home with a vision of the past, present and future. Artists face an incredibly difficult craft and career. Let’s face it, art is a luxury to struggling families and also to the artist themselves as they must make decisions to either have the comforts of life or to do the work that’s in them. To create is God-like, if you have it in your soul.” LeVotch is not all paints
and brushes. A lifelong boxing fan (“I started boxing as a kid. I’m 59 years old and I still go to the gym to train”), his boxing sculptures include such works as the “Briscoe Award”, a commissioned piece of middleweight champion Bennie Briscoe; “The End of the 9th”, a work based on a fighter Roger Russell, his sparring partner and mentor; and “The Spirit of Boxing”, a haunting work that so moved renowned attorney and former Pennsylvania Boxing Commissioner George Bochetto that he bought three of the cold-cast bronze icons. One day LeVotch would like to put on a global exhibition of boxing art. But right now, his focus is on Joey Giardello, the beloved South Philly middleweight champ and Hall of Famer. “This work will be an inspiration for anyone who is struggling to become anything,” expresses LeVotch. “Here is a man who achieved greatness and immortality in one of the most demanding of all sports
and athletics. People are inspired by the Rocky statue and story, but Rocky Balboa was a fantasy. Joey Giardello is real. Boxing is a life itself. Public art has a quality if it’s created for the man in the street. It should have humanistic ideals.” Hoping for a 2010 reveal at 13th & Mifflin, Councilman Frank DiCicco was happy to give the project his imprimatur. John DiSanto, a boxing historian and owner of www.phillyboxinghistory.com , Charles Sgrillo, president of Veteran Boxing Association Ring#1, and George Bochetto have held fundraisers and are determined to see the finish. With my toast growing cold, LeVotch gives me a final thought. “People don’t have to be told what’s good about art. If it moves you, let it speak to you.” Beef and Beer Fundraiser Apr. 18 VBA Ring #1 Club, 2733 E Clearfield Street www.joeygiardello.net
The South Philadelphia Public Record • February 26, 2009
Like most Italians in the metro area, acclaimed sculptor artist Carl LeVotch has his roots in South Philadelphia. “My grandmother came here in the early 1900s and her first home was at 11th & Latona Streets. She married a stonemason,” I’m told as we sit in Café Chicco and breakfast on cocoa and hot buttered toast. His father, Nestor, a first-generation Ukrainian and a child prodigy artist, was caught in the Great Depression and sacrificed a great opportunity for further training to help his family. “My father told me if I wanted to be an artist, to learn sign-painting so I could eat,” he reveals. LeVotch is now a master of all art forms: painting, illustration, gold leaf, photography, sculpting, and even caricature drawing. He lectures on art and can’t wait to get up in the morning to get started on his work. He still paints signs and volunteers this skill to churches he sees in need. He enjoys traveling to
Local Artist Salutes Joey Giardello
Parents Get Tuition Relief For Their Kids The scholarship donations announced at Epiphany are part of the Pennsylvania Pre-Kindergarten and K-12 EITC programs. The Pre-Kindergarten initiative provides companies with a tax credit equal to 100% of the first $10,000 contributed to a pre-kindergarten scholarship organization during the taxable year, and may receive a tax credit equal to 90% of any additional amount contributed during the year, up to a maximum of $150,000 per year though the Pre-K program. The K-12 EITC tuition program provides companies with a 75% tax credit - 90% for a two-year commitment for funds donated to approved, nonprofit scholarship or educational improvement organizations businesses may donate up to $300,000 per year though the K-12 program. “Sustaining our students and their educational needs is needed now more than ever, as more families find themselves needing help in our weakening economy,” Keller said. “I am proud of and grateful for the work of the Bridge Educational Foun-
PROUD PARENT Shawn Roccuzzio sacrifices many things so her kids Santino and Dominique can attend Epiphany Catholic School. dation and its corporate sponsors. The Educational Improvement Tax Credit program is a perfect example of how government can partner with the community to ensure a brighter future for our children.” Patricia Cody, Principal of Epiphany of Our Lord School stated, “On behalf of the Epiphany of Our Lord School and Parish Community, we are happy to host the Bridge Educational Foundation’s check presentation. The generosity of the corporate sponsors, in con-
nection with the Foundation provides financial assistance to help parents meet tuition costs. This financial assistance enables parents to provide their children with a quality Catholic Education. Inventing in their child’s future, by rooting within them the knowledge, values and skills which will enable them to compete, succeed and make a difference in our world.” It costs about $2,200 to attend Epiphany, according to Principal Patricia Cody. The Pre-K-through-8th-grade school has 216 students. The Bridge scholarships will provide each student with approximately $500, according to Cody. At Epiphany they also have various other Memorial Scholarships. Mrs. Roccuzio, who also teaches aerobics to make tuition, added, “The person that comes out of a Catholic education is a fantastic person. Because teachers have God in their lives, they teach my children like I teach my children.”
(Cont. from Page 1) Local State lawmakers, including State Sen. Anthony Williams and State Reps. Bill Keller and Babette Josephs, attended the event, They all admitted they fought on the House floor for the Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program. Other South Philadelphia schools benefiting from the scholarships are Annunciation BVM School, Children’s Village, Epiphany of Our Lord School, Holy Spirit School, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel School, Sacred Heart School, SS. Neumann & Goretti School, St. Gabriel School, St. Monica School, St. Nicholas of Tolentine School, St. Peter the Apostle School, St. Thomas Aquinas School and Stella Maris School. “In these economic times, this tuition help assumes a greater significance, “said Sister Murphy, from St Monica’s. Bridge program has donated over $8 million in last several across the state to all types of private schools, not just parochial.
The South Philadelphia Public Record â€˘ February 26, 2009