Posted on 11 March 2013
Confused about the new property tax system? Curious about how your property taxes or rent will be affected by the Actual Value Initiative (AVI)? There’s a good opportunity to learn more and have some of your questions answered at a neighborhood meeting on the property tax overhaul that will take place this Wednesday, March 13, at 7 p.m. at the Griffith Hall of the University of the Sciences (Woodland Ave & 43rd St). The meeting is organized by Cedar Park Neighbors, Garden Court Community Association, Spruce Hill Community Association, Walnut Hill Community Association, and Woodland Terrace Homeowners Association.
The meeting will include: a representative from the Office of Property Assessment (OPA), Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell’s Office, Dr. Kevin Gillen, Economist, University of Pennsylvania, Patrick Kerkstra, journalist, moderator.
The AVI was devised as a way to make the tax burden more fair citywide: Some residents’ property taxes are going up, others are coming down. The initiative included a mass reassessment of the city’s building stock.
Posted on 02 December 2011
Reader Max expresses his concern about some young men riding motorcycles/dirt bikes too dangerously on the neighborhood streets. Here’s what he writes:
“I am a resident of West Philly and am writing to bring an issue in the open since I feel like I am not the only person concerned about this. There are groups of young men riding dirt bikes all around the neighborhoods (Baltimore to Market, 48th to 56th and beyond).
These people are riding very dangerously, they often run red lights, they run on one wheel, they are disturbingly loud, they ride with no helmet (so when they get injured who is paying for their hospital bills?). I see them often, too often, missing accidents by a hair, being this close to injuring by-passers. What worries me is that I have seen them riding past police cars and NOTHING was done by the police.
Is this more than what it seems? Is this an organized group or some kind of gang practice? I don’t know. I’ve tried to call 911 but they pass by quickly, so any 911 call is ineffective. What can be done about it? Are other residents concerned as well? Is it reasonable to expect a more prompt response from law enforcement?”
Posted on 08 November 2011
The following commentary is in response to a fatal shooting early Saturday morning near 49th and Springfield. The author, Renee Tapp, is concerned about the horrific crime and what she perceives as apathy among residents.
On Friday night I awoke to guns shots and by the time I looked out of my bedroom window, a crime scene had been established by the police. After reaching out to the community through West Philly Local about the constant violence occurring on the Springfield corridor, I was shocked by the lack of interest or response from the readership of this blog.
It is my concern that this neighborhood is only interested in crime that happens to members of the community. At this time, I understand there is only a limited amount of information to share, however I worry that the readership has been able to dismiss this crime because the victim wasn’t from our neighborhood. For me, it does not matter where the victim is from, but rather someone perceived our neighborhood as an acceptable place to commit murder.
A human being was killed outside my house on Friday. Either direction on Springfield Ave resonates with the aftermath of a tragedy. As November begins, I am forced to ask, how much has changed since the rape and robbery near Springfield in September? I do not feel more safe now than I did then.
I would hope that the problem solving that has been so prominent on the blog in the last few days addressing non-crime issues, such as dogs off leash, can extend to addressing the on-going crime in our community. Or perhaps, we should continue to ignore these persistent problems until it is one of us, and then feign shock at how this could possibly be.