Bellevue Bulletin 11/15/2019
Happy Friday and welcome back to your weekly update with Bellevue Strategies!
The biggest piece of news this week is that the impeachment trials for President Donald Trump have officially begun and are being broadcast to the nation via most major news outlets, and C-SPAN. Here’s where to watch. Interestingly enough, Philadelphia is playing a role in the impeachment proceedings. During the public hearings, one of many people thrust into the spotlight was Steve Castor, a relatively low-profile lawyer with strong ties to the Philadelphia area. Devin Nunes, the top Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, yielded much of his questioning time to Castor, who spent years interrogating Democrats as the chief lawyer of the House Oversight Committee when it was under Republican control. (Via The Inquirer.)
In addition, Philadelphia schools are using impeachment proceedings as a teaching moment. One 12th-grade Advanced Placement Government and Politics class at William Penn Charter School is paying close attention. Tuesday morning, prior to the broadcast beginning on Wednesday, teacher Josh Oberfield wrote down the names and titles of the major actors that the students would be seeing on the screen. Across the country and in Philadelphia, teachers recognize this unique opportunity they have with these impeachment proceedings, and as this younger generation becomes increasingly involved in politics, the impeachment proceedings are undoubtedly a learning opportunity that is energizing them.
In Council this week, a unanimous bill was passed that will provide free legal representation to low-income tenants facing evictions. It’s anticipated that the program will be phased in over several years as funding increases. The legislation, introduced by Councilwoman Helen Gym, supplies legal representation to tenants whose annual gross income does not exceed $24,980 for a single person and $51,500 for a family of four. Any renters who meet income guidelines in Philadelphia — including those living in housing owned and managed by the Housing Authority — are eligible for representation. Tenants will be represented by nonprofit legal services. (Via The Inquirer)
Also approved in Council was a “red flag” law, introduced by Councilmember Jones and designed to make it easier for citizens to flag individuals deemed a danger to themselves or others, and request court approval to remove guns from their possession. This bill comes after the past few weeks have been riddled with a number of young children becoming victims of gun violence. Bill 180553, sponsored by Jones and Councilmember Johnson, is intended to allow citizens to seek help more swiftly and easily if they sense a neighborhood situation brewing that might get out of control and involve guns.
That’s all for this week, folks! Be sure to follow us on Twitter @PhillyAdvocates and don’t forget to check out our podcast!