Philly Council considers closer review of contracts

A Philadelphia councilman wants to out an end to extending city contracts without approval from City Council.

Councilman Jim Kenney says approving a one-year contract with optional extensions running two or three years is not right.

He has proposed a bill that would “allow the administration, any administration, to give a one year contract to anyone they think is appropriate.

“But if they renew that contract for a second, third or fourth year, they have to bring it back to Council. Could you imagine a major corporation awarding a $40 million, $45 million contract and not talk to the board of directors?” Kenney said Thursday.

Kenney says mayors since Ed Rendell have used this end-run around council.

“What we’re looking to do is have the oversight that we are supposed to have when it comes to large expenditures of taxpayers’ money and ask some questions,” he said.

Kenney says he wants a hearing on a prison health-care provider that has received contract extensions without council approval.

 

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