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Philadelphia Officials Holding Fast on Reporter Ban At Investors’ Meeting This Week

(Philadelphia City Hall.  File photo by Tony Hanson)

(Philadelphia City Hall. File photo by Tony Hanson)

Mike Dunn Mike Dunn
Mike Dunn is City Hall bureau chief for KYW Newsradio 1060. He covers...
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By Mike Dunn
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Nutter administration is standing firm in its decision to bar reporters and the public from a meeting this week with Wall Street investors, despite a protest from several media outlets.

Rob Dubow, the mayor’s finance director, says the investor meeting this Thursday is aimed at getting favorable interest rates when the city borrows for a variety of needs.

“The rate on the bonds varies depending on their impressions of the city, so we want them to have as good as impression as possible,” he said today.

The daylong session will include comments from Mayor Nutter, Dubow, and other top officials.  But reporters are prohibited, and that has prompted Bloomberg News, the Associated Press, and the Inquirer to send Nutter a letter requesting access to the session.

In the letter,  Bloomberg Media counsel Charles Glasser writes that the decision barring the press “perpetuates distrust and cynicism.”

But Dubow says that despite the media request, the meeting will remain private — to encourage investors to speak freely.

“People are more likely to be open about their issues if there aren’t reporters in the room,” he tells KYW Newsradio.

And Dubow says this stance does not clash with the mayor’s long-held insistence that his administration is open and transparent:

“We do believe in transparency, but there are always meetings that aren’t open to the press,” Dubow said.

Officials with the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce and the Center City District are also taking part in the city’s sales pitch to investors.

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