Biography of Mayor Edward G. Rendell
Since taking office in January, 1992, Mayor Edward G. Rendell of Philadelphia has restored fiscal stability to a municipal government that was near bankruptcy and brought new meaning to the term, "Reinventing Government."
When Mayor Rendell was sworn into office, the city of Philadelphia faced an annual structural budget deficit of more than $200 million and a projected cumulative budget deficit of $1.4 billion at the end of his firm term as Mayor, even assuming that the municipal workforce received no wage increases over that four-year period. In his first year in office, Mayor Rendell proposed and implemented the city's first balanced budget in seven years and was able to design a Five-Year Financial Plan for the City of Philadelphia that wiped out the projected $1.4 billion cumulative budget deficit.
Among Mayor Rendell's management and productivity initiatives are the following:
1) new collective bargaining agreements, that were successfully negotiated with all of the City's non-uniformed workers and favorable arbitration awards with the City's uniformed workers. Taken together, these agreements are projected to save the City of Philadelphia almost $400 million over their four-year term, without salary rollbacks or painful benefit cutbacks.
2) new revenue-generating initiatives that have increased city revenues by $70 million without any increase in taxes. The revenue increases are the result of more efficient tax collection efforts, computerization of the city's tax and license fee collection program, and a restructuring of the city's fee structure.
3) implementation of management and productivity initiatives designed to reduce government expenditures. This included renegotiation of all city leases, consolidation of the city's fleet operations, and competitive bidding of the city's insurance contracts.
4) contracting out the provision of 17 municipal services, resulting in annual savings of more than $20 million. Almost 1,000 positions have been eliminated from the municipal workforce as a result of this competitive contracting program.
5) the formation of public-private partnerships between city government and the local business community. This includes corporate sponsorship of many city projects, and the Avenue of the Arts, a 12-block stretch of South Broad Street dedicated to arts-related institutions.
A native of New York City, Mayor Rendell graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1965 and Villanova Law School in 1968. In 1977, Rendell ran for District Attorney and became the city's youngest DA in history. He was elected mayor in 1991 and re-elected in 1995. He and his wife Midge, a Judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals, have an 18 year old son, Jesse.