Tuesday, December 30, 2008 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mayor's Statement on Today's Court Ruling on Library Closures
Philadelphia, December 30, 2008- Mayor Nutter has released the following statement:
"We emphatically disagree with today's decision by Judge Fox.
The decision flies in the face of the Home Rule Charter which is explicit in its allocation of powers between the executive and legislative branches of government.
It appears that the ruling excluded any consideration of the validity of the City Council ordinance on which the case was based. It ignored that the Charter allows the Mayor to make operational decisions and affords him the ability to run the City. In effect, the ruling would make every operating decision a political one.
This decision is larger than an opinion on these particular library facilities. Instead, it fundamentally alters the relationship between the Mayor and City Council. The City would grind to a halt if consensus of 18 independently elected officials were required for every decision.
On this basis alone, we intend to appeal the ruling.
Unfortunately, the City is still faced with an unprecedented financial challenge and our fiscal condition continues to deteriorate – even by the day. We will immediately seek ways of preserving the $36m over five years in savings that was associated with our original plan.
In the meantime, we will make every effort to comply with the judge's order and will make the necessary operational changes to be compliant"