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Councilman May Try To Override Mayor’s Veto of Full-Building Electronic Billboard

By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Mayor Nutter has vetoed a bill that would have allowed the owner of the old Electric Factory to drape electronic advertising on the building’s sides. But, the idea may not yet be dead.

Mayor Nutter vetoed the Electric Factory signage bill because it could violate the city’s agreement with PennDOT and thus jeopardize millions of dollars in federal highway funds.

The sponsor of the measure, first district Councilman Mark Squilla, says he may try to override the veto this week.

“I’m probably going to wait until Tuesday or Wednesday of next week before we decide,” Squilla said last week. “If we’re not going to go with an override, maybe there is an option of tweaking the ordinance in a way that will change the Department of Transportation’s mind as to how funding would be given to the City of Philadelphia.”

The owner of the building promises to donate one-fifth of the ad revenue from the sign to three local schools.

Supporters say Nutter’s veto jeopardizes the funding. Anti-blight advocates say in addition to threatening funding, the signage would be distract drivers on the Ben Franklin Bridge, and thus poses a safety hazard.

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  • After Veto, Councilman Drops Plan For Huge Billboard Near Vine St. Expressway « CBS Philly

    […] Councilman Mark Squilla, of the 1st District, decided not to call for a veto override.  He said he lacked clarification on whether a wall wrap on the old Electric Factory building would, as opponents claimed, jeopardize federal highway funding (see related story). […]

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