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PHILADELPHIA-If the Pennsylvania Convention Center didn’t have enough problems, two members of the board have been advised they must refrain from voting. Like Robert Judge, who resigned two weeks before assuming his assignment as president and chief executive officer of the authority, they are in potential violation of an anti-nepotism statute.

The 1986 statute, designed specifically to prevent the authority from filling top jobs with people with political connections, came to light just before Judge, an already controversial appointment, was to assume power. Now its beam shines on board members Steve Aichel, whose wife is an elected official in Chester County, and George Burrell, who holds a cabinet-level post in Philadelphia Mayor John Street’s office.

While the board awaits a legal opinion on the legitimacy of its positions, neither member will vote on authority business. The authority has urgent business. The naming of a new CEO is high on a list that also includes overcoming labor problems, obtaining more big bookings, and raising funds for expansion.

Without the planned $464-million, 300,000-sf expansion, it is believed the Downtown Philadelphia center would be booked only by SMERFs, which, in convention-industry lingo, stands for “social, military, educational, religious and fraternal” groups.

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