Bulletin: A People's Budget

Yesterday, Mayor Kenney announced his 2021 city budget, which, according to WHYY, “looks to boost city services and avoid layoffs while simultaneously accelerating cuts to business and wage taxes.”

The Bulletin returns this week, turning our focus back to Philadelphia. Yesterday, Mayor Kenney announced his 2021 city budget, which, according to WHYY, “looks to boost city services and avoid layoffs while simultaneously accelerating cuts to business and wage taxes.” There’s stuff to like, sure. Arts spending is coming back, and the city police budget is frozen for the second year running. It’s basically a return to the pre-COVID status quo, which isn’t great, but is probably better than a 2020 budget that cut everything

Still, we gotta talk about the tax cuts.

Between exemptions for mega-nonprofit landowners like Penn and tax abatements for developers, Philadelphia has been letting many of its wealthiest would-be taxpayers totally off the hook for years. Per Tax the Rich PHL, Philadelphia’s billionaires have increased their personal wealth by an eye-popping $2.5 billion since the start of the pandemic. Kenney’s 2020 budget touches none of that wealth. Instead, the Mayor is focusing on making “steeper cuts” to city business taxes ($343 million worth of tax cuts over five years) while also lowering city wage taxes. Considering that city finances are still stretched from the pandemic, the idea of cutting business taxes is so bad that it can only have come from — you guessed it — Condo King Allan Domb. “Now is the time to bolster our economy so we can grow again,” Domb spouted to WHYY last week when calling for $75 million in cuts. Seems Kenney is giving him and Philadelphia’s ruling class that and much more!

There is, though, an alternative: a plan for a People’s Budget that would give power back to working Philadelphians and raise city revenue by taxing the wealthy, cutting down on payments to Wall Street, and forcing local corporations to pay their share. Yesterday, Mayor Kenney set the stakes; today, the fight begins.


Save the Date: Philly DSA Convention

Mark your calendars: our 2021 Convention, where we'll set chapter priorities and elect leadership for the next two years, is scheduled for June 26 and 27! The meetings will be all virtual; more details to come.

This Week in Unions

  • First, the bad news we have to mention: the Amazon union in Bessemer, Alabama lost. It wasn’t a fair fight, and it might not be over yet considering the sketchiness of Amazon’s anti-union campaign. But, for now, it’s an L.
  • Last week, Councilmember Helen Gym introduced a resolution in support of the PRO Act, which, as our readers should know by now, is the biggest piece of labor legislation Congress has seen since, some would say, the NLRA itself.
  • Speaking of the PRO Act: DSA is making calls to Democrats who aren’t cosponsoring and to their constituents — over 500,000 calls so far.
  • Finally: Your Philadelphia UNION thumped Costa Rican side Deportivo Saprissa 4-0 (5-0 on aggregate) to secure their spot in the Concacaf Champions League quarterfinals. League play starts this weekend!


Medicare For All Phone Zap
Friday, Apr 16 | 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm | Virtual

Stomp Out Slumlords Canvass
Saturday, Apr 17 | 11:00 am – 2:00 pm | Virtual

Housing Committee Meeting
Sunday, Apr 18 | 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm | Virtual

Steering Committee Meeting
Monday, Apr 19 | 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm | Virtual

Canvassing Committee Meeting
Monday, Apr 19 | 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm | Virtual

POC Virtual Social Hour
Friday, Apr 23 | 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm | Virtual

Trivia Night
Friday, Apr 23 | 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm | Virtual

New Members Meeting
Sunday, Apr 25 | 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm | Virtual

Green New Deal Commission Meeting
Monday, Apr 26 | 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm | Virtual

OCOS Committee Meeting
Monday, Apr 26 | 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm | Virtual

Marxism Reading Group
Wednesday, Apr 28 | 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm | Virtual

Branch Events

BuxMont DSA Media & Communications Committee Meeting
Thursday, April 15 | 7pm  | Virtual

BuxMont DSA Finance Committee Meeting
Friday, April 16 | 7pm | Virtual

BuxMont DSA April General Meeting
Tuesday, April 20 | 7pm  | Virtual

Delco DSA April General Meeting
Wednesday, April 21 | 8pm  | Virtual

April Socialist Social
Friday, April 23 | 7pm  | Virtual


Grievance Officer Volunteers
Philly DSA is looking for volunteers to serve as Grievance officers.

According to our bylaws (see Article XIII. Discipline), Philly DSA must appoint from one to three members to serve as Harassment Grievance Officers (“HGOs”). Responsibilities of HGOs include: receiving and archiving all documents related to grievance charges; processing complaints according to the process detailed in the policy; handling communications related to filed grievances; investigating charges and reporting recommendations to the Steering Committee; handling the appeals process; and reporting yearly to the Local. Grievance officers can request guidance and advice from National DSA staff.

HGOs must be able to maintain strict confidentiality in relation to charges filed within the local, maintain impartiality during investigations, and to be ready to handle difficult matters in a sensitive and effective manner.

If you would like to be considered for appointment as an HGO, please write to [email protected], subject line “HGO,” with a description of why you believe you would be a good fit for this role, and detailing any related experience and skills.

Support 👏 Philly 👏 DSA 👏!
Local Dues - support our campaign work and cover everyday operating costs like meeting space // Contribute to Philly DSA PAC - help fund our independent electoral campaigns // Accommodations, Accessibility, Childcare - let us know what you need to stay involved // Moved away from Philly? - update your address on the DSA national database.

Harassment and Grievance Process
In accordance with Article XIII of our Bylaws, a commission has been formed to receive, process, and review grievances for disciplinary action. To read more about the process or to file a grievance you can do so here.


Stay safe,

Philly DSA Bulletin Team





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