Chamber Will Highlight Inclusive Growth Agenda at “Roadmap for Growth” Conference on April 17, 2019
PHILADELPHIA, PA: Today, the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia, whose members employ more than 600,000 throughout the region, announced the launch of its “PHL Neighborhood Growth Project” to highlight and advocate a new neighborhood growth agenda for the city. This long-term project, which builds on the Chamber’s “Roadmap for Growth” initiative, will advance a series of proposals to spread prosperity more widely, to establish partnerships to address neighborhood needs, and to use a series of community meetings and briefings to help drive broad-based consensus around reform. This is especially important as Philadelphians head to the polls to elect Council members and the Mayor.
“Philadelphia is a shining ‘City on the Hill’ but too often we have heard the ‘tale of two cities’ where growth and prosperity have not reached every corner of the city. The business community is here today to make clear that needs to change. Like a family, when any one of us are not doing well, it affects us all. We need policies, including but certainly not limited to, wage and business tax reductions and regulatory reform, that will continue to build Philadelphia as a world class city,” said Rob Wonderling, the President and CEO of the Chamber. “It is critical that every neighborhood is included in the city’s progress. We are committed to working as a team with the City Council, the mayor and neighborhood and civic leaders to make this happen.”
The “PHL Neighborhood Growth Project” focuses on four key areas:
- Inclusive Growth and Good Jobs
- Workforce Modernization
- Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods
- Putting People First at City Hall
Partnering with the Chamber will be the African-American Chamber of Commerce (AACC) of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware and the Asian American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia.
“As voters focus on who should represent them on Council and as Mayor, it is critical to shed the old-school, zero-sum thinking that pits citizens against each other or draws an artificial line between businesses and neighborhoods,” continued Steven Bradley, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the African-American Chamber of Commerce of PA, NJ, and DE (AACC). “We must work together to ensure Philadelphia’s prosperity reaches every corner of the city, and that starts with having an honest dialogue about the challenges facing the city, and what can be done to ensure that our city, its economy and its tax base continues to grow and offers widespread opportunity.”
Yvette A. Núñez, who helps lead this new neighborhood growth initiative as the Vice President, Civic Affairs for the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia, identified Philadelphia’s high poverty rates and lagging job creation as issues needing urgent attention. She also noted that the city faces significant financial problems, including a pension that is funded at just 45%, despite the city being the highest taxed of any big city in the country.
“We all want better schools and a modernized workforce, world class parks, rec centers and infrastructure, but economic growth is the driver for getting us to this promised land,” closed Núñez.
As part of the announcement of the “PHL Neighborhood Growth Project”, the Chamber, also launched a new website, phillyneighborhoodgrowthproject.com. The new site will be a hub for the Chamber to detail its neighborhood growth agenda. The Chamber will also host a “Roadmap for Growth” issue forum on April 17, 2019 to bring together Philadelphia’s business community, civic leaders, neighborhood organizations, and residents together to discuss growth in Philadelphia and unveil its district-level growth report, researched by Econsult. The Chamber will send questionnaires to all candidates who qualify for the primary ballot and organize candidate and community briefings.