Mayor Kenney Announces Bid for Re-Election

(PHILADELPHIA) – This morning, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney formally announced his intent to seek re-election.

In a campaign video, the Mayor, alongside Philadelphia parents and teachers, discussed the tremendous progress our schools have made in just three years.

Under Mayor Kenney’s administration, teachers reached their first contract and received their first raise in five years; the City created a no-cost pre-k program that is serving thousands of mostly low-income families; the School District was returned to local control; the City committed half a billion dollars in additional funding to our public schools; and the City has established a community schools program that is helping thousands of students and their families thrive, in and outside of the classroom.

Philadelphia public school teacher John Coates said, “Mayor Kenney is the people’s champion because he’s in the schools. He just doesn’t send someone out to the schools. He has been in the schools himself. It helps us to know that there is someone that is on our side that really cares about our needs and concerns.”

Fellow school teacher Ivey Welshans said, “He helped us get local control back. Making sure that we have counselors, nurses in every school. He wants to make sure we are fully staffed. Things that never occurred before.”

In addition to investing in our schools, Mayor Kenney is also making a historic commitment to Philadelphia’s neighborhoods through Rebuild, a multimillion dollar infrastructure program to improve city parks, libraries and recreational centers, funded by the city’s Beverage Tax.

Philadelphia City Councilwoman Cherelle Parker said, “The zip code that you live in should not determine whether or not you value yourself and or your community.”

During his first term, the Mayor made enormous progress in criminal justice reform, decreasing Philadelphia’s prison population by over 40 percent and depopulating City’s House of Corrections. He’s also taken a strong, but sympathetic approach to the opioid crisis – helping hundreds access treatment while closing homeless encampments in Kensington. The Mayor also stood up to the Trump administration’s attempts to divide us, successfully defeating AG Sessions in court to protect Philly’s status as a welcoming city. Most recently, the Mayor also raised the prevailing wage for City employees and contractors to a living wage of $15 an hour.

“If all of our children, given the right attention and the right resources, can break out of poverty, in a generation we can eliminate poverty or limit it or reduce it substantially,” Kenney said.

“In addition to education investments, we’re rebuilding our parks, rec centers and libraries across the city. Philly’s local jail population has gone down by over a third, while the crime rate is at its lowest rate in forty years. We’re raising the minimum wage to $15 for city workers and we’re expanding job force training. And, I can promise you that I’ll continue to stand up to Trump and ensure that Philadelphia remains a welcoming city,” he said.