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Philadelphians vote yes on traffic enforcement officers

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Philadelphians also re-elected Jim Kenney

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Philadelphians turned up to the primary ballots Tuesday to re-elect Mayor Jim Kenney and vote for—among many other things—an amendment to create a new class of police officers to handle traffic enforcement.

The amendment to the Home Rule Charter, which received nearly 69 percent of the votes by late Tuesday night, calls for a new group of police officers who would regulate traffic, though they won’t have the ability to arrest people or carry firearms, according to Rather, the measure is a way to combat growing issues of congestion in Center City by bringing in more officers to handle traffic flow.

Most recently, the amendment was opposed by Uber and other rideshare drivers who urged Philadelphians to vote against the measure during Tuesday’s election.

“Drivers are asking Philadelphia voters to vote no on Ballot Question 4, that would add additional officers ticketing drivers, and demand that the city force Uber to fund safe pickup and drop off solutions for high traffic areas,” the Philadelphia Drivers’ Union said in a statement ahead of a larger protest early this month.

Here are some other major takeaways from Tuesday’s election:

  • Incumbent mayor, Jim Kenney (D) won the mayoral vote by 67 percent, followed by Anthony Hardy Williams (D), who received 24 percent.
  • Maria Quiñones-Sanchez and Kenyatta Johnson, two incumbent council members who faced serious competition, won the primary votes with 96 and 93 percent of the votes counted, respectively.
  • Jamie Gauthier (D), running in the 3rd district, overtook incumbent council member Jannie Blackwell by 55 percent to 45 percent, respectively, with 76 percent of the votes counted.