A look at some of the latest proposals issued by major candidates in Philadelphia's May 15 mayoral primary.

Former Councilman Michael Nutter

released an economic development plan yesterday intended to foster the creation and growth of small businesses. Nutter proposed establishing an Office of Business Services to help firms get established and deal with obstacles. To increase the share of city business that goes to women, minorities and the disabled, he would replace the Minority Business Enterprise Council with an economic development cabinet. He also would demand that construction trade unions that do city work triple their number of minority and female apprentices. And he would fully fund the city's obligation to Community College of Philadelphia.

Price tag:

The big-ticket item is the pledge to gradually increase the city's contribution to CCP to one-third of operating costs, up from about one-fifth now. That could cost as much as $20 million per year more than the city is paying now.

Where he'd get the money:

From general city revenues.

Pro and con:

It's not clear how much government can do in the short run to help create businesses and private-sector jobs. One of the city's biggest liabilities in terms of attracting companies is a poorly educated workforce. In that regard, Nutter would create an Office of College and University Development to build on the strength of the colleges and universities in the region. Beyond that, he would encourage companies to provide prepaid tuition reimbursement plans, making it easier for low-income workers with some college credits to complete their degrees.

The full text:

Read Nutter's proposal at

» READ MORE: http://www.nutter2007.com/index.php?/issues/


- Larry Eichel