Thursday, March 10, 2016

CCRA News Letter

School Daze
CCRA Opposition to Council's Rushed Realty Tax Resolution Succeeds
Zoning Remapping Public Meeting
Two Candidates Events
Board Member Nominations
CCRA Upcoming Events
Local Merchant Spotlight
CCRA Merchant Member Discount Program
Limon Dance Company at the Prince
Art Exhibit at Twenty-Two
Open Mike For Women's History Month
Learn about Neighborhood Planning ans Zoning
Join Penn's Village and Learn about Our New, Very Tall Neighbor
Philadelphia City Institute Library need Donations



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This program includes presentations by three panelists, Martha Benoff, Ph.D., certified school psychologist, Eileen Dwell, retired Philadelphia and suburban school principal, and Susan Souffie, rising kindergarten parent followed by a Q&A and refreshment time to mingle with other parents. The event is free, but advance registration is requested for head count purposes.To register, click here.
CCRA Opposition Rushed Realty Tax Resolution Succeeds 
We hope that CCRA's 11th hour letter influenced Council's decision to forego or postpone a vote on Resolution 160157 saying "yes but" to a Pennsylvania Constitutional amendment to enable commercial property to be taxed at a higher rate than residential property.  As written, the amendment requires the extra tax on commercial properties to be used to reduce the City's wage/business taxes.  The purpose of the amendment is to shift taxes from incomes (personal or business) to property, which should increase economic growth in the City.  A broad coalition of commercial interests,  the Committee of Seventy, and Mayor Kenney support the constitutional amendment with the business/wage tax reduction.  
Council's resolution declared different commercial/residential property taxes rates to be "vitally important" BUT opposed  the linkage of a wage/business tax reduction  and instead urged that the City be given free discretion to allocate the increased property tax funds.  CCRA agrees that "In a logical world", Philadelphia doesn't need Harrisburg to tell it how to spend money - but observes that the Resolution's  elimination of the wage/business tax reduction  makes the proposition less likely to succeed in Harrisburg
Council introduced its resolution less two weeks before the vote had been scheduled.  This doesn't give the public - including CCRA - enough time to respond thoughtfully to the proposal. The CCRA Government Relations committee had to convene an emergency meeting and delivered its recommendation to our board two days before it met and leaving us a mere 24 hours to prepare and deliver the letter to Council and arrange to testify at Council.  With important matters, like this resolution, we'd encourage City Council to build in more time for meaningful public comment.  We are all on the same Philadelphia team.  
Zoning Remapping Public Meeting, Wed., 3/23, 7-9PM, Trinity Memorial, 22nd & Spruce St.
For the past year, a CCRA task force, working with Planning Commission staffers,  has been reviewing zoning classifications in our community.  Proposed revisions to zoning in the area between Spruce Street and Naudain Street, and 19th Street and the Schuylkill river will be presented so that neighbors may make comments and suggestions. All are welcome.
Candidate Event:US House, Thurs, 3/24, 7-8:30 PM, Acad of Vocal Arts, 1920 Spruce St

*Note change of venue from location announced in recent hard copy Center City Quarterly

Hear the four Democrats and one Republic seeking the US House of Representative's 2nd District seat answer, discuss, and debate issues presented to them by the moderator, Sam Katz, former mayoral candidate and current film producer, who will also present questions from the audience:
  • Chaka Fattah, Incumbent;
  • Brian Gordon, Lower Merion Township Commissioner, Attorney;
  • Dan Muroff, Philadelphia's 9th Ward Democratic Leader, Attorney, Ex-Congressional Aide;
  • Dwight Evans, PA State Representative 203rd District (Germantown, Oak Lane, Olney, Lawncrest); and
  • James Jones, HR Consultant.
Board Member Nominations 
The Association seeks nominations to fill a number of Board seats for the year beginning on July 1, 2016.  New Board members generally serve a term of 3 years.

The Board is a working Board.  We are seeking energetic individuals who have a passion for living in our residential district; are interested in issues of quality of life and community service; and are committed to active participation on the Board, including actively serving on at least one committee (e.g., Membership, Fund Raising, Newsletter, Zoning, Finance, Streets, Long-Range Planning, Historic Preservation).  Candidates must pledge to devote a minimum of four (4) hours per month on CCRA activities, not including time spent attending, and preparing for, monthly Board meetings.

While CCRA membership is open to any individual, corporation, or organization, under our bylaws, board members must live within our geographic borders (i.e., the area of JFK Boulevard south to South Street, and Broad Street west to Schuylkill River).  Members are encouraged to forward a resume or summary of qualifications of any individual who is interested in serving (which could be yourself) by March 25 to CCRA, 1600 Market St, Ste 2500, or email, with the title "Board Candidate" in the subject line.
CCRA Upcoming Events
Thurs. April 7, 2016, 7 - 8 pm, Temple Beth Zion - Beth Israel, 300 South 18th Street: Town Hall with City Council President Darrell L. Clarke, President of City Council and the Councilperson for the 5th Councilmanic District, a portion of which falls within CCRA's boundaries. 
Thurs. May 12, 2016, 7 - 8 pm, Temple Beth Zion  Beth Israel 300 South 18th Street:  Pennsylvania Senator Farnese Town Hall, 7-8pm.  
Rittenhouse Hardware at 20th & Pine is This Week's Merchant Spotlight
Rittenhouse Hardware is a true neighborhood crossroads. Tell them your problem, they'll tell you how to fix it. The staff is astoundingly friendly, helpful and knowledgeable. They don't have the answers to all of life's questions, but they're close.
CCRA Merchant Member Discount Program
Support our local merchants and save money too. These local merchants will provide a discount (described here) to any member who shows a current CCRA membership card (Di Bruno Bros. has its own CCRA card) and personal identification.

Nature's Gallery Florist, 2124 Walnut St (215-563-5554)
PhotoLounge 1909 Chestnut Street (267-322-6651)
Twenty-Two Gallery, 236 S. 22nd St, (215-772-1911)
Rim's Dry Cleaners & Tailors,2203 South St. (215-546-1889)
Rittenhouse Hardware, 2001 Pine St. (215-735-6311)
Rittenhouse Pet Supply, 135 S. 20th St (215-569-2555)
Computer Troubleshooters,108 S. 20th St. (215-825-2101)
Di Bruno Bros., 1730 Chestnut St. and the Market at the Comcast Center (215-665-9220)
Dom's Shoe Repair, 203 S. 20th St (215-972-0098)
Eye Candy Vision, 218 S. 20th St (215-568-3937)
Koresh Dance Company, 2002 Rittenhouse Sq St. (267-687-1769)
Liberty Vet Pets, 265 S. 20th St. (888-458-8587)
Uber - Limo service Uber provides $20 off a first ride, Good for new users only. Members use promo code CCRA14.
Philly Foodworks - Use the code "CCRA" when signing up for home delivery and receive a $20 discount on delivery charges.
Dance Affiliate - Get $10 off  Dance Performances with your CCRA Membership.  Members use  promo code allattheprince.
My Doc Urgent Care, - 1420 Locust St (215 800-1909). Show your membership card and for a $25 flu shot with this coupon

Limón Dance Company at the Prince Theater: Wed., Now Thru Sun., 3/13, 1412 Chestnut St
Celebrating its 70th Anniversary, the
Limón Dance Company
(LDC) performs three masterpieces by legendary choreographer José Limón.
Performances take place Thursday, March 10 at 7:30pm; Friday, March 11 at 8pm; Saturday, March 12 at 2pm and 8pm; and Sunday, March 13 at 3pm. Tickets cost $37-$57 and can be purchased in person at the Prince Theater Box Office, or online obtain the CCRA member $10 discount use the promo code allattheprince. 
Art Exhibit at Twenty-Two Gallery: "Illuminations" by Joyce Schwartz, Fri, 3/11 thru Sun 4/3, 236 S. 22nd Street.
"Bleu Garden" 30"X 40" oil on canvas"
Opening Reception: Friday, March 11th, 6 to 9 PM  

Closing Reception:  Sunday, April 3, 1 to 4 PM 

Intoxicated by the colors in nature, Joye Schwartz paints in an impressionistic style illuminated by the brilliance of light and playing on the various hues contained in the world surrounding her.
Joye Schwartz, who lives in Elkins Park, Pa., has been painting since 1987. Her artwork is included in private collections in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Israel, and Australia. An original watercolor by Ms. Schwartz was recently commissioned by the Lauder Institute to be included in the collection of Ronald Lauder.
Open Mike for Women's History Month, Tues, 3/15, 7:30-11PM, D'Angelo's Ristorante Italiano, 256 S. 20th St.
Join CCRA and FitC member Jean Haskell to celebrate Women's History Month with songs and readings about women at D'Angelo's.

You can order food and drinks if you like--or not. You can come to listen or you can bring your favorite readings and/or songs about women and be prepared to sing or read. Let Tom Adams at the keyboard know you want to "perform" and he'll add you to the list.

No need to register.....just show up!

But if you let Jean know you're coming, she'll make sure there are enough chairs. Email her at
Learn about Neighborhood Planning and Zoning, Wed. Evenings, 4/13-5/25, 6-9PM, 1515 Arch St, 18th Fl
Citizen's Planning Institute:  If you are interested in learning more about neighborhood planning and zoning in Philadelphia, the Citizen's Planning Institute is for you!!  Course fee includes dinner.  Application forms and more information may be found at   Application deadline: March 23.  For more information, contact: or 215-683-4648
Join Penn's Village and Learn about Our New, Very Tall Neighbor, Tues, 3/29, 10 - 11:30 AM 
Developed by Liberty Property Trust, the Center, under construction at 1800 Arch Street, will be 60 stories high, the tallest building in the city and the 8th tallest building in the US.  The building will also include a 222-room Four Seasons Hotel, a full service spa, banquet and meeting facilities, and two restaurants.
The day will begin with a 45-minute overview in the Comcast Center Conference Center, followed by a tour of the construction site.  WEAR COMFORTABLE CLOTHES AND SHOES!
Meet at the ground level reception desk of the Comcast Center at 1701 JFK Boulevard.  Please register by calling (215) 925-7333 or by sending an email to   The maximum capacity for this program is 25 people. Register by March 25. 
This event is free for Penn's Village members and volunteers.  A $5 donation to Penn's Village from other guests, payable at the event.
Philadelphia City Institute Library needs Donations of Used Books, CDs, DVDs and Audiobooks for Book Sale
The Friends of the Philadelphia City Institute Library on Rittenhouse Square is collecting donations of used books, CDs, DVDs and audiobooks for its Book Sale on Saturday, April 30th, 2016, 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Books must be excellent or "like new" condition. Please bring books to the Reference Desk by Saturday, April 23. All proceeds from this event will be used for programs, materials and equipment at the Philadelphia City Institute Library.
© 2016 Center City Residents' Association 

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