The LuLac Edition #1413, Dec. 23rd, 2010
LUZERNE COUNTY BUDGET
No tax increases for 2011, 4 million dollars on hand and a budget voted on time. The Luzerne County Commissioners seem to be operating on all cylinders to get this budget done. County Chair Mary Anne Petrilla was pleased with the outcome. And the county, are you ready for this is going to institute a time clock system to keep track of those county employees and their hours. Just like a real business. Good job guys!
Mayor Chris Doherty will veto the budget put together by Scranton City Council. He says there is a 3 million dollar shortfall. The Council meanwhile says they will override the veto. Doherty says he will stand by Council‘s actions and try to administer the budget to the best of his ability.
Think you’re done with Christmas parties after Saturday? Not so fast, the Luzerne Colunty GOP will hold their annual get together on Thursday night, Dec. 30th at 6pm.
Thursday, Dec. 30, 6 p.m.
Sixth District Christmas Party
41 South Main Street, Wilkes-Barre
The price is right and these Luzerne County GOP people are a fun bunch of people even when I’m getting Facebook group invitations to sites like, “Gag Nancy Pelosi”, “Harry Reid was born on Mars” and “Obama is a mechanical wind up Robot. (Okay I might buy that one!) Anyway, stop on by and leave your Steve Urban masks at home. You’ll have a good time.
HOME RULE NEWS
Last week, as usual I was spouting off in the “Maybe I’m Amazed” feature. That prompted a response from Attorney Jim Bobeck who gave me the inside scoop on what the race for Home Rule Chair is all about. I’m sharing that with you today.
Because I enjoy your blog, I feel the need to respond to a comment within your "Maybe I'm amazed" column that Jim Haggerty is being challenged for the Chair position, and since I'm the one challenging him, I thought I would drop you a line on this one. First, Jim Haggerty did an excellent job as Chairman of the Home Rule Study Commission, and the results speak for themselves......Home Rule passed. He personally scarified much of his own time and resources for the Charter, and his deeds cannot be overstated. It is not lost on me that my current position would not even exist without the study commission's work and Home Rule's passage, for which I am very grateful.
Now, regarding the "challenging" of the Chair position on the Transition Team, I first must note that "challenge" is not exactly the right word here. I like Jim, professionally and personally, We are both Kingston residents, and he does a great job as my Mayor In fact, we had no idea whether either of us would even be nominated for this position until the nominations were made at the December 8, 2010 meeting. We belong to different political parties, but that doesn't have any bearing on this.
I did not nominate myself, and in fact, i nominated Jim Haggerty for the position, if you look at the public record. However, while Jim did a great job with the Study Commission, our new government was not set up to give positions of power to persons in return for gratitude for past work. In fact, the critics of the old form of government and Charter proponents often leveled that very same charge against the county commissioner system. Therefore, I think Jim Haggerty would agree that his role on the study commission should not entitle him to certain positions because that's the exact thing he fought to eliminate with the Charter's passage
Furthermore, one may ask why I have not resigned or withdrawn my nomination. However, if one thinks about this a bit, my withdrawal would trigger a series of public comments and criticisms at the transition team, in which people would suggest that a "back door deal" was reached, or that the transition members made secret deals to give him the Chair spot and get me out of the way. However, nothing could be further from the truth, and I will not provide any fodder for such Machiavellian thoughts by simply withdrawing.
In closing, it's a fundamental tenet that people should always have a choice, no matter the race or circumstances. i respect this greatly, and as you can see from the transition positions, there are two contestants for each spot from Chair to Vice-Chair to Secretary to Treasurer. People should, as a right, have a choice, the ability to choose. And even if someone loses in a landslide, at least a choice was presented to voters. In an open, political society, that's as good as it gets sometimes. So, in that sentiment, our committee will have a choice.
There are no backdoor deals, no political favors in return for gratitude for past performances, and everyone has a choice. A good start for our new government, I think.
And If Mr. Haggerty wins, I'll be the first to shake his hand, and I think he'll do a very good job.
BARLETTA’S NEW CHIEF
U.S. Rep.-Elect Lou Barletta, R-Hazleton, announced that Patrick Rothwell will be his chief of staff.
Rothwell, who was born in Harrisburg and grew up in Massachusetts, has a tremendous amount of congressional experience. Most recently, he was chief of staff for the U.S. House Republican Policy Committee, where he was responsible for daily operations of the Republican leadership office.
Rothwell has worked in various capacities for other members of the U.S. House and Senate, including Rep. Thaddeus G. McCotter, R-Mich., for whom he was legislative director; former Rep. Charles W. Norwood, R-Ga.; and Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
“Patrick has a wealth of knowledge and experience in Washington, so he will be a great chief of staff,” Congressman-Elect Barletta said. “Patrick’s considerable talents will definitely help the people of the 11th District.”
U.S. Rep.-Elect Tom Marino has announced the appointment of the four individuals who will fill his top congressional staff positions.
The appointments are effective Jan. 3 and will ensure the freshman congressman “hits the ground running” when the 112th Congress is sworn into office on Jan. 5, Marino said.
Lackawanna County natives Bill Tighe and David Weber will head Marino’s Washington and district operations, respectively. Tighe, formerly of Newton Township, was named chief of staff while Weber, who had served as Marino’s campaign manager, was appointed district director.
Drew Kent of Arlington, Va., was tabbed as legislative director, and Renita Fennick, Wilkes-Barre Township, will serve as Marino’s communications director.
“This is a solid team with a lot of energy and a good synergy,” Marino said. “I have the utmost confidence in each one of them and also am certain they have the skills and mindset to work together as a team.
“Most importantly, each of them knows that our mission is to serve the constituents of the 10th District,” Marino said. “The four of them share my sentiment -- and that is, that we must never forget who we are and why the good people of Pennsylvania sent us to Washington in the first place. We will work together with our varied backgrounds and experiences to make sure the voices of the people in the 10th District are heard in D.C.”
As chief of staff, Tighe, of Burke, Va., will oversee Marino’s Washington, D.C., and 10th District operations and personnel. Tighe is currently serving as chief of staff for U.S. Rep. Jim Gerlach, a Republican from Pennsylvania’s 6th District, and also worked for former Congressman George W. Gekas. Tighe will focus on leadership and overall management responsibilities including policy analysis, strategic planning, budgeting and development of communications and outreach strategies.
Kent, 30, of Arlington, Va., earned a bachelor of arts degree in political science from Boston College and a juris doctorate from the Columbus School of Law at Catholic University. He previously served as legislative director for J.C. White Consulting, Washington, D.C., and worked on the staff of U.S. Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas. He and his wife Laura have an infant daughter.
As legislative director, Kent will manage the congressman’s legislative priorities and staff, advise him on all legislative issues, House floor procedures and will implement the legislative goals of Marino on both the House Judiciary and Homeland Security committees. Marino learned last week that he was assigned to the two key committees.
Fennick, 50, is the current executive director of the Luzerne County Republican Party and will leave that position on Dec. 31. A longtime journalist, she is a graduate of King’s College with a bachelor of arts degree in mass communications. She has two children, Ken, 25, and Chrissy, 22. She will work out of the district and will coordinate the communications outreach to the constituents and the media.
Both Freshman Congressmen are peppering their staff with both D.C. insiders and locals who can jell into hopefully a good cohesive team for their respective first year in office.
Brian Hughes interviews Laura Ford from our sister station in Dallas Texas about the Ray of Hope Foundation, and how you can help children living in poverty in Uganda.
Brian speaks with Kate Paine from the Pa Wine & Spirits Shoppes with tips on
throwing the ideal holiday party.
An encore interviews with Shannon Ludwig from the Red Cross, who discusses the first regional blood drive of 2011 on Jan 5th in Scranton, Wilkes Barre &
Hazleton, and with Kevin Davis of Today’s Options PPO with tips on selecting the best deal as the Medicare election period ends on Dec 31st.
Sunday Magazine, Sunday mornings at 5:30am on JR 93.7, 6am on 97BHT & 97.9X, 6:30am on Magic 93, and 9:30am on WARM 590 AM.
SAT. NIGHT LIVE AT OLDIES
This week a very special Saturday Night Live at the Oldies with Shadoe Steele on WILK. You’ll hear a special program featuring Mannheim Steamroller.
Nearly 21 billion pounds of pork were processed from about 105 million hogs last year. . A total of 1,305,622 metric tons of pork valued at more than $3.1 billion was exported. Christmas ham sales throughout the nation make up 41% of the Pork Market.
AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT
The first Kwanzaa is celebrated by Maulana Karenga, founder of Organization US (a black nationalist group) and later chair of Black Studies, at California State University, Long Beach from 1989 to 2002…….in Harrisburg rumors begin to start about the future political ambition of Robert P. Casey a retiring State Senator who ran for Governor against Milton Shapp and lost in the primary. Casey was being touted as a possible opponent against incumbent Joe Clark who’s whose stance on the Vietnam War has angered centrist Democrats/. Meanwhile Congressman Richard Schweiker who stayed ourt of the GOP Governor’s race was being advertised as a possible opponent to Clark on the GOP side. Casey later won statewide for Auditor General in 1968 and Schweiker beat Joe Clark in the fall election of ’68……in Luzerne County the local GOP is in a quandary. Te Chair of the Commissioners Jim Post proposed reassessment and there is talk there might be a primary challenge to him in the ’67 primary. The County GOP preempted that plan by floating the story that Wilkes Barre Councilwoman Ethel Price would run with post with Shickshinny Commissioner Bill Goss running for another row office….and in the last week of 1966, the number 1 song in America and LuLac land was “Snoopy Vs. the Red Baron” by the Royal Guardsmen