“Last night, Occupy Philly’s general assembly (which retreated indoors to the Quaker Friend’s Center on Cherry Street as rain began pummeling the soap-box meeting) discussed a letter Managing Director Richard Negrin sent to them through its legal committee.
The letter—which frequently reminds Occupy about the city’s support of protesters’ right to free speech and willingness to cooperate with the movement—asks that protesters move their tents to beyond 20 feet of the building. It also requests weekly, formal meetings with the Mayor’s Office, and informs the Occupiers that police have been conducting walk-throughs, taking photos of “minor deviations in the promises made to the city at the outset” (litter and urination). The letter also reminds Occupy Philly that the permit they signed stipulates they move when construction begins next month on a $50 million renovation project.
The project will renovate the subway stations below the plaza and create more green space around City Hall—as part of the city’s Greenworks initiative to reduce storm water runoff—as well as to build an ice-skating rink.
A representative from Occupy’s legal group said, “The letter said we agreed to move when construction starts, but in the permit it’s open-ended.” In other words, “They’re lying.””