Nutter pushing council toward decision on school funds

Philadelphia’s mayor has issued a challenge to City Council as he nudges them toward a tough choice.

Mayor Michael Nutter says there is no ambiguity when it comes to the amount of money the school district wants to cover its gaping budget hole. It’s in the range of $75 million to $110 million.

“The reason you hear a number of numbers around it really depends on how valuable the decision makers here decide that certain programs are,” Nutter said Monday. “All of them have a price tag associated with them. If you want full-day kindergarten, that costs ‘X.’ If you want transportation, yellow bus and transpass. it has a cost, that’s ‘Y.’ “

Nutter says council members just have to make a choice.

“I think all the information is out there, the members need to make up their minds as to what they want to do,” he said. “There is no confusion, they just need to decide: They are voting for the children or they are not. That’s it.”

An informal survey of City Council shows no consensus on how to raise new revenue for the district. But Nutter says the vote doesn’t come until Thursday–so there’s plenty of time to bring a group together.

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