As previously discussed in my last post, The City of Philadelphia provides public services to its approximate 1.54 million residents (and according to the Census Bureau, it looks like the population is growing for the first time in over 50 years).

In order to pay for all of the public services for its residents, Mayor Nutter recently proposed a $3.87 billion budget. This includes just $33 million in spending reductions, compared with $146.6 million in new taxes and fees, a figure that would rise to $185 million in future years.

So where is the additional money coming from? Well of course its residents. Mayor Nutter has also recently proposed a $300 annual trash fee and a tax on sugary drinks which would be the largest in the country. He was quoted in the Philadelphia Inquirer as telling us Philadelphians "nothing worth having in life is free."

The $300 annual garbage fee - which would raise about an additional $108 million - is akin to a 10 percent increase in total Philadelphia property tax collections, which stand at about $1 billion

The tax of two cents per ounce on sugary drinks will not prove cheap for those unable to break their soda habit, either. Drinking two 12-ounce cans of sugared soft drinks a day would add up to an additional $175 in taxes a year.
Together, the two new fees represent a 4.9 percent increase in Philadelphians' overall general fund tax and fee burden. Mayor Nutter says these new taxes were necessary to fill a budget deficit of up to $150 million. Whether others agree with him and its approved is still yet to be determined.

So what is the city doing on a daily basis to reduce spending and ensure they are getting a fair market price for the billions of dollars in goods and services they purchase every year with our money?

In following posts, I’m going to review the city’s Procurement Department, the types of bids it runs, its bid process, who is eligible, and how they ultimately decide who to award the business to.

At the end, we all have to pay one way or another – “death and taxes.” However, I think one question the city has an obligation to ask is how much of what we pay is unnecessarily wasted.

If the city utilized Source One’s strategic sourcing services, many of these tax increases would not be necessary. Please feel free to give Source One a call Mayor Nutter (215)902-0200, we’d be glad to help.
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Nick Haneiko

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