CANDIDATE QUESTIONNAIRE

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1 CADIDATE QUESTIOAIRE GEERAL ame: Joseph R. Guerra, Esquire Office sought and political party affiliation: Philadelphia City Council at Large, Democrat Campaign website and/or Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/electjoeguerra Current neighborhood and total years of residence in Philadelphia: Bustleton, 29 years Age: 29 Children (if any, and if so do/did they attend public or private schools): PROFESSIOAL Education (college/grad school/certificate; degree & year earned in each): Saint Joseph's University, May 2007 Bachelor of Science, Decision and Systems Science Drexel University's Thomas R. Kline School of Law, May 2010 Juris Doctor Current occupation: Currently I am an attorney at Sabatina & Associates PC, where I have been practicing law since May 2011 representing individuals in zoning, custody, support, divorce, personal injury, estate, election, and collection matters. Previous occupations: Judicial Fellowship Program, First Judicial District of Pennsylvania May May Aid the Honorable Judge Robert J. Matthews in conducting research and drafting legal documents. Pro Bono Intern, Community Legal Services April Provide pro bono legal services for underprivileged parents. - Assigned cases pertaining to parents whose children are the subjects of DHS petitions. ot authorized by any candidate or candidate s committee (Continued 1 of 5)

2 CIVIC Previous/current elected position held and years served (if any): Greater Bustleton Civic League - Vice President February May 2013, Executive Legal Advisor December Present Democratic Ward Exec. Comm. - 58th Ward, 17th Div. May Present, 58th Second Vice Chairman, June Present eighborhood Revitalization Corporation - Executive Director December Present Leadership positions in civic or community groups: In addition to the above, I was appointed to the ational Advisory Board of United We C.A.. in December United We C.A.. is a national organization dedicated to educating families impacted by addiction and co-occurring illness. Currently, United We C.A.. is active in sixteen (16) states, including Pennsylvania. OPE-EDED In your opinion, what are the core responsibilities of the office you are seeking? As a City Councilman, my responsibility is to eliminate taxes that prevent Philadelphia from growing and by removing red tape and making it easy to do business with the city. How are you uniquely qualified to meet those responsibilities? As an attorney and a Democratic Committee Person, I see first hand how inefficient and poorly run the City is. We need to appropriate funds to change the way the City works, go paperless, and realize the dream of literally being able to conduct any business desired on-line. For each statement below please indicate, where applicable, whether you agree or disagree, and comment to elaborate on your response. ou can agree in whole or part. Do not feel limited to the available comment space; we want to hear your thoughts. ot authorized by any candidate or candidate s committee (Continued 2 of 5)

3 SCHOOL FUDIG REFORM There are a limited number of ways City Council can increase the funding that the City provides to the School District of Philadelphia. Should Council legislate a funding increase to the School District? If so, what specific school funding legislation would you introduce? Unfortunately, Dr. Hite and his team at the SRC cannot succeed without additional resources being available. It's not only about money. The city of Camden has $22, per student and still does not succeed; however, we cannot pretend money is not a factor. We need to rely on real estate taxes for this funding and for the elimination of the net income portion of BIRT. BUSIESS TAX REFORM City Council has authority over many of the tax types and tax rates paid by Philadelphia s businesses and workers. Should Council legislate a change to the business or wage tax structure? If so, what specific business tax reform legislation would you introduce? I support the elimination of the net income portion of the BIRT either gradually or by increasing gross receipts. I also support gradual decreases in wage tax until it is below 2%. SOCIAL WELFARE REFORM City Council can approve the use of financial instruments, such as minimum wages and tax rebates, to aid the poorest working Philadelphians. Should Council legislate a change to the wages paid to or taxes paid by low-wage workers? If so, what specific legislation would you introduce? In part. I would support legislation to increase the minimum wage; however, I am opposed to a tax rebate as it would take away money which could then be used to lower business taxes, which would then increase employment. PESIO REFORM The city s pension funds are approximately 47.4% funded and cost the General Fund almost $700 million a year. What specific approach would you advocate to put the pension funds on the path to solvency? In order to put the pension funds on the path to solvency, it may be necessary to sell some city assets; however, without further information or the opportunity to review specific plans, it is unclear which assets should be sold. From such sales, each billion that is added to the pension fund would save a $100 million for the general fund. It can make a tremendous difference if we take half of the savings for tax relief and the other half we keep placing into the pension fund. ot authorized by any candidate or candidate s committee (Continued 3 of 5)

4 GOVERACE REFORM City Council has considered legislation that would institute a three-term limit for incoming Councilmembers. Should Council approve this or similar legislation, thereby creating a Charter change ballot initiative that would set term limits for the office of City Council? es. Being a member of City Council should be a service, not a lifetime job. City Council has the authority to change the law that allows sitting Councilmembers to raise in excess of funding limits for non-campaign or pre-campaign activities. Should Council legislate to close the campaign finance loophole? o. The mayor's race is a clear indicator that the limits in place, in the presence of outside money such as Philadelphia 3.0, require the candidates themselves to raise funds without limits also. On average, only 10% of eligible Philadelphians vote in off-year elections. Should Council create a Charter change ballot initiative that would stagger City Council elections so that At-Large City Council races are decided along with the other citywide offices of Controller and District Attorney? The turn out is generally even lower in off years than in a Mayor's race, so currently I lean in favor of no change. City Council s convention of Councilmanic Prerogative is not law and grants authority over land use decisions to a single elected official. As a City Councilmember, when land use ordinances are up for full Council consideration will you vote on the merits of the ordinance? ot authorized by any candidate or candidate s committee (Continued 4 of 5)

5 TECHOLOG REFORM The city s technological infrastructure is outdated but the resources to update it are limited. What specific technology project or upgrade should the city prioritize in order to increase the efficiency of municipal operations? It is important that the City begins to get up to speed on the issue of technology, but with the limited resources available, the easiest solution is to go paperless. Going paperless would save tens of millions and a great resource on this issue is former Councilman Bill Green's 10-point Open Government policy paper. Taking this one step further, we need to prioritize our systems soi that every field, that is not private, is available to the public via an extensible, searchable online database. As a Decisions and Systems Science major at Saint Joseph's University, I am educated and a proponent of database management, and it's importance for efficient government. VISIO ou are running for a four-year term in City Council. What do you hope to accomplish during these four years? I would push for appropriate sale of our non-core assets to place the proceeds in the pension fund (please refer to my response to the Pension Reform question on page 3). I would also introduce a Charter change regarding term limits for City Council people. I also hope to revamp our tax system as set forth above and will work the the Administration in that regard. Finally, I will act to improve and refine our new zoning code and oppose measures that seek to undermine it. ot authorized by any candidate or candidate s committee (Continued 5 of 5)

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