PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The union that represents city firefighters — which has battled Mayor Michael Nutter on contract issues and station brownouts — is now endorsing Nutter’s sole Democratic challenger: Milton Street.
Mike Brensan, the recording secretary for Firefighters Local 22, says the union leadership met with Milton Street and came away impressed that he would, as mayor, end policies of the Nutter administration that they find objectionable.
“We have a candidate come in tell us he’s going to restore the (fire) companies that were taken away, and ensure our members’ safety and the citizens of Philadelphia, we take that very seriously,” he told KYW Newsradio.
Some observers don’t consider Milton Street’s candidacy in the May Democratic primary to be viable.
Bresnan says Local 22 isn’t counting him out, and that this is more than simply a message aimed at Nutter.
A spokeswoman for the Nutter campaign attributes the union’s move to the fact that the Nutter administration is challenging the latest firefighters’ arbitration award in court. She said the endorsement will have no impact on the admiration the mayor has for firefighters.
Milton Street was sentenced in 2008 for failing to file tax returns and served about two thirds of his 30 month sentence.
Reported by KYW City Hall Bureau chief Mike Dunn.