Zoning Matters in Frankford

The Frankford CDC will be hosting a presentation on proposed changes to the zoning code on Thursday, September 15th at 6:30 P.M.  This is one of those boring sounding issues that has a tremendous impact on life in the city.  It will potentially change everything.  Come and and hear what is going on.

  • Lorraine

    I’m suprised the Frankford Civic Association isn’t hosting this meeting.

  • Political Assassin

    I am glad the the Frankford CDC was reading on Zoning Matters and The Vacant Land Issues: http://gloomyhappy.wpengine.com/2011/07/15/frankford-cdc-needs-an-intern/#comment-11254

    Then they took the initiative to use that information and contact the City to disseminate it to the public. (It could have been the other way around).

    I think this is an important meeting and all the area civic associations & community groups best get on board with some input – or risk being left out.

    This event on Zoning Procedures may be billed as hosted by the FCDC, but it is the City’s Presentation.

    On my criticism of the FCDC: If anyone wants to prevent a reoccurrence of past happenings (that may be lingering as a bad taste in one’s mouth), then they best embrace the CDC or infiltrate it.

    Even myself – I need to understand Community Development Corporations & how they work – so I took a look.

    Many CDC’s are by nature non-profits. Housing & Development of Vacant Land is part of what they do.

    I think Frankford’s problem began when too many non-profits in the FCDC were looking into developing even more non-profits, than in the development of profitable Tax Paying businesses.

    It should never be that type of lop-sided affair.

    The State of Pennsylvania has a guideline of what a Community Development Corporation should be doing:

    Department of Community & Economic Development
    http://www.newpa.com/what-can-pa-do-for-you/about-dced

    The mission of the Department of Community and Economic Development is to foster opportunities for businesses to grow and for communities to succeed and thrive in a global economy. Our mission is to improve the quality of life for Pennsylvania citizens while assuring transparency and accountability in the expenditure of public funds. Click here for Frequently Asked Questions about DCED.

    Business Assistance

    Pennsylvania wants business to prosper. Because of that, DCED and the Commonwealth offer business assistance to help organizations fund their projects or start a business, find a location, expand their business, or stay in Pennsylvania. One significant sign of Pennsylvania’s commitment to growth is the Economic Stimulus Package signed into law in 2004. Hailed as the most comprehensive and flexible package in the country, the $2.8 billion program has introduced a vast number of projects aimed at expanding the Commonwealth’s economy.

    Overall, Pennsylvania has also taken a very sophisticated approach to economic development. It all begins with The Governor’s Action Team (GAT), a group of professionals chosen to help businesses with every aspect of expansion or relocation projects. GAT works with individual companies to provide “one-stop shopping” for any relocation or expansion needs. The team members provide liaison with local governments, subcontractors, and utility companies. They identify available grants, loans, and other financial incentives. And they help find the best place to locate the business.

    Community Development

    Pennsylvania is committed to developing and enhancing its communities – from downtown revitalization, to helping the individual citizens of low economic means to weatherize their houses against the chill of winter. Pennsylvania’s focus on physical and economic infrastructure improvements produce significant change for the betterment of a community. Pennsylvania has a variety of assistance programs that enhance a community’s quality of life through improved housing, water and sewer infrastructure, public facilities and economic assets.

    Technology Investment

    Pennsylvania is a leader in technology-based economic development, with a comprehensive Infrastructure in place to assist companies at every stage of the business life cycle. Thousands of technology companies, from large corporations like Johnson & Johnson and Harley Davidson, to emerging companies like Renal Solutions and NanoHorizons have chosen to make the Commonwealth their home. Through innovative initiatives and an unparalleled economic stimulus package, Pennsylvania is providing the support technology companies need to transition through every stage of the business life cycle.

    International Business

    As the 18th largest economy in the world, Pennsylvania is no stranger to the international market. In an increasingly global economy, international opportunities abound. And with the largest international network of offices and representatives and more cross border projects than any other US state, the Commonwealth is uniquely poised to succeed. Pennsylvania is also the nation’s fastest growing exporter, and is home to nearly 6,000 foreign-owned businesses, employing nearly 250,000 people.

    Principles for Growth, Investment & Resource Conservation

    The Governor’s Economic Development Cabinet adopted a set of principles and criteria that will be used by state agencies to guide investment and support local growth and economic development across the commonwealth. The principles and criteria were developed over two years by the Interagency Land Use Team, a working group of the Economic Development Cabinet. The 10 principles are:

    Redevelop first — Support revitalization of Pennsylvania’s many cities and towns and give funding preference to reuse and redevelopment of “brownfield” and previously developed sites in urban, suburban, and rural communities.

    Provide efficient infrastructure — Fix it first: use and improve existing infrastructure. Make highway and public transportation investments that use context sensitive design to improve existing developed areas and attract residents and visitors to these places. Require private and public expansions of service to be consistent with approved comprehensive plans and consistent implementing ordinances.

    Concentrate development — Support infill and “greenfield” development that is compact, conserves land, and is integrated with existing or planned transportation, water and sewer services, and schools. Foster creation of well-designed developments and neighborhoods that offer healthy life style opportunities for Pennsylvania residents.

    Increase job opportunities — Retain and attract a diverse, educated workforce through the quality of economic opportunity and quality of life offered in Pennsylvania’s varied communities. Integrate educational and job training opportunities for workers of all ages with the workforce needs of businesses. Invest in businesses that offer good paying, high quality jobs, and that are located near existing or planned water & sewer infrastructure, housing, existing workforce, and transportation access (highway or transit).

    Foster sustainable businesses — Strengthen natural resource based businesses that use sustainable practices in energy production and use, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, recreation and tourism. Increase our supply of renewable energy. Reduce consumption of water, energy and materials to reduce foreign energy dependence and address climate change.

    Restore and enhance the environment — Maintain and expand land, air and water protection and conservation programs. Conserve and restore environmentally sensitive lands and natural areas for ecological health, biodiversity and wildlife habitat.

    Enhance recreational and heritage resources — Maintain and improve recreational and heritage assets and infrastructure throughout the commonwealth, including parks and forests, greenways and trails, heritage parks, historic sites and resources, fishing and boating areas and game lands offering recreational and cultural opportunities to Pennsylvanians and visitors.

    Expand housing opportunities — Support the construction and rehabilitation of housing of all types to meet the needs of people of all incomes and abilities. Support local projects that are based on a comprehensive vision or plan, have significant potential impact (e.g., increased tax base, private investment), and demonstrate local capacity, technical ability and leadership to implement the project.

    Plan regionally, implement locally — Support multi-municipal, county and local government planning and implementation that has broad public input and support and is consistent with these principles. Provide education, training, technical assistance, and funding for such planning and for transportation, infrastructure, economic development, housing, mixed use and conservation projects that implement such plans.

    Be fair — Support equitable sharing of the benefits and burdens of development. Provide technical and strategic support for inclusive community planning to ensure social, economic, and environmental goals are met.
    _________________________________________________________________________

    Perhaps the FCDC still has a chance to redeem itself.

    Political Assassin

  • Political Assassin

    Frankford CDC joins United Philly:

    United Philly [Tax ID #27-4576805] is a project of the Philadelphia Community Corps, a Pennsylvania-based nonprofit organization dedicated to revitalizing Philadelphia’s impoverished neighborhoods through a variety of community service projects that focus on making an immediate difference with tangible results.

    Greetings from the Frankford CDC!

    by FRANKFORD CDC on AUGUST 24, 2011 ·
    http://unitedphilly.org/?p=1081

    The Frankford Community Development Corportation (FCDC) is happy to be joining the United Philly team! We work with current and prospective business owners to revitalize the 4200 to 5300 blocks of Frankford Avenue – and we have several special projects we will be blogging about in the coming weeks.

    We are also dedicated to bringing the arts back to Frankford, primarily through our monthly Second Saturday arts festivals, our version of First Friday, which will continue into the fall.

    Our next two events will be on Saturday September 10th all along the 4700 block, and on Saturday October 8th on the 4600 block of Frankford Ave from 12n-3p.

    We hope to bring valuable insight into the United Philly community, and look forward to working with you all.

    To find out more about us, visit our website: http://www.frankfordcdc.com,
    our blog: http://www.frankfordcdc.blogspot.com

    and friend us on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/#!/FrankfordCDC!

    You can also contact us the old fashioned way and give us a call at 215-743-6580! We love to talk!
    ———————————————————–

    Pennsylvania CDC Associations: http://www.ncced.org/associations/Pennsylvania.html

    Political Assassin

  • Daisy-Cutter & M.O.A.B

    This message should not get buried. We kind of like being able to get a quick look at what the FCDC is up to:

    Political Assassin Says: Frankford CDC joins United Philly:

    United Philly [Tax ID #27-4576805] is a project of the Philadelphia Community Corps, a Pennsylvania-based nonprofit organization dedicated to revitalizing Philadelphia’s impoverished neighborhoods through a variety of community service projects that focus on making an immediate difference with tangible results.

    Greetings from the Frankford CDC!

    by FRANKFORD CDC on AUGUST 24, 2011 ·
    http://unitedphilly.org/?p=1081

    The Frankford Community Development Corportation (FCDC) is happy to be joining the United Philly team! We work with current and prospective business owners to revitalize the 4200 to 5300 blocks of Frankford Avenue – and we have several special projects we will be blogging about in the coming weeks.

    We are also dedicated to bringing the arts back to Frankford, primarily through our monthly Second Saturday arts festivals, our version of First Friday, which will continue into the fall.

    Our next two events will be on Saturday September 10th all along the 4700 block, and on Saturday October 8th on the 4600 block of Frankford Ave from 12n-3p.

    We hope to bring valuable insight into the United Philly community, and look forward to working with you all.

    To find out more about us,[FCDC], visit our website: http://www.frankfordcdc.com,
    our blog: http://www.frankfordcdc.blogspot.com

    D.C & MOAB

  • Jael

    Truth is so precious that she should always be attended by a bodyguard of lies. – Churchill

    Political Assassin had some interesting comments. He was correct in some of his suspicions about political puppets.

    But just who are the puppets and who is pulling the strings – ah!

    By the time we learn the truth, we will already be like a helpless fly caught in a spider web.

    A bad penny always turns up, meaning that a no-good person can be counted upon to come back again and again.

    Steve Culbertson’s name keeps surfacing, “like a bad penny” – (to coin a phrase).

    To be aware is to be alive:

    OPINION. Man Overboard!
    Slummin’ It
    Published: Feb 23, 2011

    “Steve Culbertson, director of housing for Impact Services, testified that his nonprofit was ready to buy Coyle homes for redevelopment — but that the banks wanted $80,000 for properties his group had appraised at $20,000.”
    http://archives.citypaper.net/articles/2011/02/24/man-overboard

    Impact Services | Board & Staff

    Board & Staff
    Impact Services Board
    Officers
    • Mike Driscoll, Chairman
    • Frederick Jackes, PhD., Vice Chairman
    • Tracee Hunt, Secretary
    • Perry N. Blackman, CPA, Treasurer
    Members
    • Frank DiCicco
    • Walter DeTreux JD
    • Joseph P. Dougher, JD
    • Charles Greene
    • Conrad Jones
    • Marian a Luongo, Esq
    • Maria D. Quiñones-Sánchez
    • Stephen Simpson, JD
    • Thomas Wrigley

    Steve Culbertson—Director, Housing.
Steve joined Impact in 2006, greatly expanding its capacity  to do housing development. In addition to an extensive track record doing  housing production and development  while Executive Director of  Frankford Community Development Corporation and Director of Community Planning at  Asociación de Puertorriqueños en Marcha, he brings demonstrated strengths in policy and organization development  evidenced by his successful launch of the Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations in 1994. Steve earned a BA in Religious Studies from Brown University, and a Masters in City Planning from University of Pennsylvania. http://www.impactservices.org/about/staff.php

    The New Zoning Matters:

    Composition of the Commission

    The Zoning Code Commission consists of 31 members comprised as follows:

    The Executive Director of the Philadelphia City Planning Commission, who serves as the Chair,

    The Commissioner of Licenses & Inspections,

    The Chairman of the Zoning Board of Adjustment,

    10 community leaders, one appointed by each of the 10 District Councilmembers,

    3 Councilmembers (with at least one from the minority party) appointed by the Council President,

    5 members appointed by the Mayor, and 5 members appointed by the Council President (these appointments must include a zoning attorney, urban planner, architect, real estate developer and building trades leader),

    One representative from the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, Greater Northeast Chamber, African-American Chamber, Hispanic Chamber and Asian-American Chamber (these members may appoint an alternate).
    http://zoningmatters.org/commission/referendum

    If anyone really believes that there is any level playing field – then they also must be the ones who are dealing cards from the bottom of a marked deck.

    It matters very little what citizens may testify at the hearings or at community meetings, just look at the names involved.

    יעל

  • Pandora

    Lorraine, I was thinking the same thing.

    Jael, I see Walt and Steve are still working together. Thanks for the post . Good info in there.

  • skeeter

    Is this the same Impact services that were responsible for the Twins at PowderMill? I remember the big meeting at Romano’s about the houses and seem to remember that it was Impact Services involved.
    Looks like another political arm to me.

  • Jael

    “10 ‘community leaders,’ one appointed by each of the 10 District Councilmembers.”

    I question why the City even needs any CDCs? It is all too convoluted & corrupt.

    With Frank DiCicco, Maria D. Quiñones-Sánchez, Walter DeTreux & Steve Culbertson on the same team of Impact Services, http://www.impactservices.org/about/staff.php – Which “community leader” will be chosen?

    I suspect Kate Clarke will be their choice.

    The aftermath of the building of the Twins at Powder-Mill left one family in bankruptcy and losing everything. How did it happen?

    Could there be that there is a winning formula for community development or an emerging pattern of organized crime?

    The Northeast Times Fri, Jul. 15, 2005 … “Walter DeTreux, who is both Mariano’s chief of staff and president of the Frankford CDC.” http://gloomyhappy.wpengine.com/2011/08/13/neighborhood-advisory-committee/#comment-11400

    [PDF] IN THE COMMONWEALTH COURT OF PENNSYLVANIA Luis E …
    Apr 30, 2008 – alleged: 8. Luis and Deborah Munoz purchased a going business …. Deborah met with Steven Culbertson and he informed … Councilman Mariano “in the spring of 2003” to discuss whether he would object to ….. or Walter DeTreux’s April 23, 2003, http://www.courts.state.pa.us/OpPosting/CWealth/out/806CD07_4-30-08.pdf

    [PDF] IN THE SUPREME COURT OF PENNSYLVANIA EASTERN DISTRICT LUIS E. MUNOZ AND …
    http://www.courts.state.pa.us/OpPosting/Supreme/out/297eal2008.pdf

    [PDF] *Honorable Joseph H. Rodriguez, Senior United States District …
    In 2007, Luis and Deborah Munoz obtained a jury verdict against the City…
    The City alleged that sabotage by the prior owner, Luis Munoz’s illness, …
    … Mariano, or the City Planning Commission. In August and September 2003, the Munozes met with Steve Culbertson, Executive Director of Frankford Community … http://www.ca3.uscourts.gov/opinarch/074297np.pdf

    [PDF] IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF PENNSYLVANIA 1. Thereafter, by order dated February 21, 2007, this court denied …Oct 10, 2007 – Luis Munoz and Deborah Munoz, for emotional distress… http://www.paed.uscourts.gov/documents/opinions/07d1234p.pdf

    [PDF] IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT
    May 24, 2007 – and Deborah Munoz borrowed approximately $1 million from. Sovereign Bank to purchase a commercial property and going … http://protect.theinfo.org/pacer/ecf.paed/15311475236.pdf

    I remember Nino propositioning me (everyone and anyone) to purchase his Farmer’s Market. This was just before Munoz bought it – hook line & sinker.

    What was never investigated by the FBI (in the Mariano scandal) was if Nino had inside information from Rick Mariano, Steve Culbertson, or Walter DeTreux so that he could sell & move to Bucks County before the $heet got deep in Juniata/Frankford.

    Either it was not part of their investigation or they did not need it for a conviction.

    Ya’el