Protests force Philadelphia mayor to abort speech

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Associated Press

Posted on March 14, 2013 at 10:30 AM

Updated Thursday, Mar 14 at 10:33 AM

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Deafening protests have forced Philadelphia's mayor to abandon his annual budget address in the middle of his speech.

Mayor Michael Nutter left City Council chambers on Thursday amid chants from union members angry about the lack of contracts. They shouted, blew whistles and stomped their feet to drown out his remarks.

Three of the city's four biggest unions have been without contracts since 2009. Last month, Nutter petitioned the state Supreme Court to intervene in the stalemate with District Council 33, which represents thousands of blue-collar municipal workers.

The City Council meeting has been in recess since Nutter left the room.

The Democratic mayor had been trying to introduce the city's budget for the next fiscal year. He also was expected to address a revamped property-assessment system.

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