Morning eye-opener

    As battle lines form for Philadelphia City Council contests in the coming year, we’ll try and keep you in the know.

    One possible candidate for the 8th Councilmanic district in northwest Philadelphia that I didn’t mention in my story last week is Derek Green, currently special counsel to City Councilwoman Marian Tasco.

    The big question in the race is whether four-term incumbent Donna Reed Miller will take her retirement payout and abandon the seat, or take the payment and run again.

    Green is a well-known figure in city hall, an attorney who’s also worked in banking. He says if Miller retires, he’s in the race. If she doesn’t, he’ll stay out of it.

    There’s a rumor a week about what Miller will do. Stay tuned.

    Yesterday we noted that State Rep. Michael McGeehan, the reputed frontrunner to replace retiring Democrat Joan Krajewski in the 6th District, has decided not to run.

    Krajewski has represented the river wards in the lower northeast since Carter was president.

    McGeehan’s departure leaves former school board member and former ward leader Martin Bednarek the best-known name in the Democratic primary. He says he’s gathering strength among the district’s ward leaders.

    Meanwhile Sandy Stewart, a community activist from Tacony says she’ll carry the Republican banner for the open seat in November.

    Stewart, a married 37-year old mother of two says she knows Democrats have a five-to-one registration edge in the district.

    “People don’t care whether you’re Republican or Democrat, male or female,” she said. “They want someone who will represent their concerns and work hard on them from start to finish.”

    And I have to give a wincing high-five to Vernon Loeb, deputy managing editor for the Inquirer, who I learned yesterday is leaving to become local editor for the Washington Post.

    Vernon is an old friend and an immensely talented reporter, writer, and editor. I watched him cover city hall in the 1980’s with boundless energy and acumen. That was before he went to Southeast Asia for the Inquirer, then did distinguished tours at the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and the Inky again in a management role.

    This is our loss, and Washington’s gain.

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