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Trump Approves PA Disaster Declaration; Philly Removes Basketball Rims; Joel Freedman Vandalized
 
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 03/31/20 12:00 am | updated: 03/31/20 12:03 am
 
On Monday night, 3/30, President Donald Trump approved Pennsylvania's disaster declaration. Governor Tom Wolf made the request for the declaration on Sunday, 3/29. This will allow the state and local governments to get money and resources from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to fight the disease. There are now over 4,000 coronavirus cases with over 50 deaths in the Commonwealth. The 'stay-at-home' orders were extended to April 30 and school and business closures were also extended until further notice.

The City of Philadelphia is increasing their efforts to remind people to stay at home and practice social distancing if you do have to leave your house. There are over 1,000 positive cases of coronavirus COVID-19 in the city. The Department of Parks and Recreation was out on Monday, 3/30, removing basketball rims from courts throughout the city. Basketball, while great exercise and fun to play, is a close contact sport and not conducive to social distancing. Parks are still open, but you are encouraged to keep your distance and not gather in groups.



Philadelphia Police are investigating after the home of real estate investor Joel Freeman was vandalized in Center City. Freedman is the current owner of the former Hahnemann University Hospital building at Broad and Vine. The vandal(s) wrote "Joel Kills" and "Free Hahnemann" in spray paint on the side of the home on Locust Street. (see below) Flyers were also left at the door. "This is a sad and uncalled for act of vandalism. Mr. Freedman responded quickly to the City of Philadelphia, offered to lease or sell the hospital at a nominal cost, and was rebuffed by the City. Vandalism or hate is never acceptable nor will it solve any problems, rather it is a time to come together and work collectively for the best of the community. That is what Mr. Freedman attempted to do and the city determined the site was not suitable for its needs. We still stand-ready to discuss should the city or state wish to resume discussions," Freedman's spokesman, Sam Singer, said in a statement.

Last week, the City of Philadelphia and Freedman very publicly could not reach an agreement for the city to use the building in some capacity during this coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak. Mayor Kenney has been outspoken about Freedman and calling into question his motives in the deal. Recently on NPR, Kenney said he was "a multi-millionaire owner who wanted to maximize his profits." Freedman, through his spokesperson, thought he was offering more than fair deal at $60/bed/day. That rate comes out to around $910,000/month, which the city said they could not afford. California is renting some hospitals at $237/bed/day as a comparison. Regardless, Temple University offered the Liacouras Center for free. That is a better deal and the city moved on. FEMA and the National Guard are outfitting the arena now with 250 beds.

 
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(1) response

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 by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA | responded: 03/31 12:03 am
 
Joel Freeman's house was vandalized in Center City

 

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