Taxpayer Group Releases Philadelphia Waste Report

David Williams

March 1, 2019

For Immediate Release
Contact: Grace Morgan
February 26, 2019

 Today, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA) released a report highlighting the waste and rampant abuse of taxpayer dollars by the City of Philadelphia. TPA identified a total of $278.9 million that could be better spent by city leadership. These recommendations provide the city a way to restore its fiscal and ethical credibility.

TPA President David Williams underscored the need for the city government to follow the report’s recommendations, noting that, “Philadelphia is losing its competitive edge with other cities, and city officials have become out of touch with residents and taxpayers over the past twenty years. Instead of raising taxes, like city officials did with sweetened beverages in 2017, city leaders need to cut wasteful spending and make spending more transparent.”

The report highlights wasteful spending in government operations, programs and projects, human resources, arts and culture, and events and festivities.  Highlights of questionable spending include:

  • $7 million annually in a payroll glitch that shows workers having worked more hours that they actually did.
  • $349,232 in improperly awarded contracts for parking lot providers and hotel security contractors for the Democratic National Convention.
  • $171,693 annually for the maintenance of “Bigbelly” solar-powered trash cans.
  • $15,100 in bogus invoices to political cronies for the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony. 
  • $3,280 for Philadelphia-themed snacks including pretzel nuggets and mini cheesesteak sandwiches for Mayor Nutter’s farewell party.

Williams concluded: “Even if the City of Philadelphia cuts hundreds of millions of dollars in wasteful spending, leadership still has a long way to go to ensure a prosperous city. As someone who calls Philadelphia home, it’s sad to see the city deteriorate into a national example of government mismanagement.” 

“Fortunately, TPA’s recommendations provide multiplecommon sense opportunities for the city government to redeem itself and provide real leadership.  Cutting wasteful spending and creating transparent, easy-to-follow regulations would create a thriving city, and actually mean more revenues for the city over the long-term. We hope this document will serve as a guide to help the city grow and prosper.”