PICA Approves Nutter’s Budget Despite Some Doubts
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By Mike Dunn
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – By a 4-to-1 vote, the Pennsylvania Intergovernmental Cooperation Authority (PICA), the state agency that oversees Philadelphia’s finances, signed off on Mayor Nutter’s five-year budget plan.
This came despite earlier misgivings of some members that the plan didn’t reflect the recent arbitration award to firefighters, nor possible new contracts for the two non-uniformed unions, District Councils 33 and 47.
“Next year, if it’s still unresolved, I’m not going to support the five-year plan. And I told the mayor, and he understood,” PICA chairman Sam Katz said.
The sole “no” vote came from board member Sam Hopkins:
“It is not, in my view, reasonable. It has a $200 million hole in it (the potential cost of the firefighters award), and it has a list of cuts (to pay for the award) which is just a list. It’s not incorporated into the plan in any way. And I don’t think its proper that it is accepted as such. And I believe its going to haunt us for many years.”
Rejection of the plan by PICA could have triggered the withholding of hundreds of millions of dollars from the state to the city.