With unexpected revenue, Philadelphia puts some money away for firefighters contract

The Nutter Administration is putting aside some money to pay for the contract an arbitrator awarded to Philadelphia firefighters.

Mayor Nutter’s staff has been fighting the firefighters’ arbitration award saying it’s unaffordable, but the new quarterly manager’s report shows that money has been put aside to cover the eventual costs.  Nutter’s spokesman Mark McDonald says the city received some good news in the latest tax collection numbers.

“Revenues are coming in at a higher rate than anticipated roughly $40 million in additional revenue, largely driven by larger than expected business taxes, but also some real estate taxes,” he said.

McDonald says the administration is putting $31 million aside to help pay for the firefighers’ contract.

Frank Keel, spokesman for the firefighters union, says that number is a drop in the bucket compared to what is owed.

“In fact there is more than $30 million in medical benefits due to the firefighters alone,” he said.

The firefighers have been working without a contract for three years as appeals drag on.

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