RE THE JUNE 18 article by Catherine Lucey and Chris Brennan:

To suggest that Mayor Nutter and City Council are "rowing in opposite directions" ignores much of what has occurred over the last six months.

City Council passed the mayor's budget 17-0.

A budget is about spending priorities, how we spend precious tax dollars. The budget passed by City Council in May was virtually unchanged from the one introduced by the mayor on March 19.

Both Mayor Nutter and Council agree that public safety should be a priority and that we should avoid any cuts in the numbers of police and fire officers who risk their lives to keep our citizens safe.

All agree that we should protect Philadelphia's most vulnerable and those most in need of city services. That's why we didn't close any libraries, rec centers or health centers, and preserved our support for homeless programs.

Yes, we had different ideas on how to pay for our priorities, but it's clear that City Council and Mayor Nutter fully agree on what those priorities are.

Nobody wants to raise taxes, but we were forced to find a source of additional revenue. We had different ideas on how to do this but we came to an agreement on a compromise that we could all unite behind. It's called a budget process.

Mayor Nutter and City Council are united in their efforts to tackle this unprecedented financial crisis. This is leadership, and it is what the public expects and demands from its elected officials.

Clarence D. Armbrister

Mayor's Chief of Staff

Where's Osama?

If police can find gunmen in our inner cities . . .

If "Tattle" can find celebrities in restaurants, etc., all over the world . . .

Why can't the U.S. government find Osama bin Laden? Is he on the moon or something?

Laurence Barberra, Philadelphia