The LuLac Edition #1922, January 29th, 2012
WBRE TV's Pa Live's Dave Kuharchik and Karel Zubris skating away at Coal Street.
112th District Candidate Kevin Haggerty.
It’s always amusing and interesting when a bomb throwing candidate faces the reality of the office they were seeking. Once the signs are put away, the consultants are paid and the checks are all cashed, the real work of governing begins. And sometimes the distance between a campaign issue and running the office can be measured in country miles. Such is the case with newly elected District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis. She touted herself as an innovative manager during her race against Jackie Musto Carroll but now she faces the tough reality of actually doing a budget (which she presumably is working very hard on this weekend as she told the Times Leader) and finding money. As an incoming DA she certainly had no help from the previous commissioners or the new County Council in their decision not to raise taxes. Salavantis is faced with finding more money and has said she will consider some of the money donated by Real Estate Develper Rob Meicle. To the Times Leader: “ Because of drastic cuts, I think everybody is looking for help, I’m here to listen to what PCCD (Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency,) has to say. I’d like to get some funding for our juvenile division.” Now stop me if I’m wrong but didn’t Salavantis run an anti corruption campaign and now wants some of the settlement money from the very corruption case she railed about? (Sorry, media flack Bob Harper did the majority of the railing). This is Mericle’s money. Som,e people are referring to it as “blood money. So to recap, Salavantis wants money for the same office that she accused of doing nothing while a corrupt Judge was overseeing it’s Juvenile Division. If Jackie Musto Carroll did that, there would be political hell to pay. Young Ms. Salavantis is learning quickly that campaigning and running attack ads is easy, the hard part is making the tough decisions that require integrity, not expediency.
HAGGERTY MAKES IT OFFICIAL
Kevin Haggerty is pleased to officially announce his candidacy for Pennsylvania's 112th legislative district.
"I believe this district needs somebody who represents their values and so I'm asking for the support of the voters of the 112th," said Haggerty. "The blue collar, hard-working families need a voice. They've been ignored by Harrisburg for too long."
Haggerty's previous experience running for state representative, along with his continued outreach to its residents, lends him insight into the needs and wants of the people of the district, he argued. "People prioritize education, they want to see legislators working to bring in new jobs, and they want to make sure their representatives are accessible and accountable. I hear that message loud and clear."
Kevin has a deep respect for public education. He knows that without adequate investment in education, our future is in jeopardy. As the state has failed to properly fund out schools, local property taxes have risen, teachers and programs have been cut, and students are being shortchanged. Coming from a family who attended public school from K-12, Kevin has a great interest in the public school system and would never vote for cuts to education. Instead, he will work to restore funding to our schools to give our kids the education they deserve and need to compete in the 21st century. Haggerty's opponent, current Representative Ken Smith, voted with Republicans to take vital funds away from education on HB 1330 and has been a supporter of charter expansion.
As a Former Member of the Board of Directors for Penn's Northeast and NEPA Alliance, Kevin has the background and experience needed to create and strengthen regional businesses. Supporting the growth of small business is essential to creating a healthy tax base in our communities. Kevin wants to strengthen programs that invest in family-owned businesses and go after employers who don't pay their fair share or allow unsafe working conditions. Representative Smith has not, in his nearly 6 years as a legislator, co-sponored any pro-union legislation, nor even written or introduced major legislation in the General Assembly. Kevin will be an active legislator who doesn't stay on the sidelines. Additionally, Mr. Smith has never adequately addressed the issues of his failure to pay taxes, his failure repay a government-backed loan, and his failure to pay into Social Security and Unemployment for his workers during the time he owned Smith's Restaurant. Kevin believes our representatives need to be held to a high standard: one of integrity and credibility.
As this is a Democratic Primary, it should be noted that Mr. Smith voted with Republicans to gerrymander the state during the Congressional Redistricting process. Kevin is vehemently opposed to disenfranchising Democrats, particularly since they have a roughly 1.8 million voter registration advantage over Republicans. Mr. Smith guaranteed Republican dominance at the expense of those whose interests he should be guarding.
Kevin hasn't stopped being an active participant in his community and his district. Reaching out to community members through local events and door-to-door, Kevin has made sure to be there to listen to the concerns of residents. That won't stop if elected. "It would be my priviledge to serve as a voice for the citizens of the 112th," Haggerty said. "I'll work tirelessly to be the representative the 112th deserves."
Kevin is a Dunmore resident along with his wife, Jennifer Griglock Haggerty, and his son, Kevin Joseph. Kevin graduated from Villanova University and is a former US Marine. Visit TalkToKevin.com for more information.
NUTTER BACKS MURPHY
Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter endorsed Iraq war veteran and former prosecutor Patrick Murphy for Pennsylvania Attorney General.
On the heels of announcing a major crime prevention initiative, Mayor Nutter said Patrick Murphy is the partner Philadelphia needs at the state level to help reduce violent crime in the city
“We need a tough Attorney General who is smart on crime, who understands that consumers need to be protected, that seniors need to be protected, that all of us need the protection of a strong, independent Attorney General. He has been a great champion for this city, this region, and of course, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania,” said Mayor Nutter. “His military career and his service to the nation as a military officer and as a lawyer in the military again demonstrate his true commitment to public service. What I really like about Patrick, my friend, is that he will defend our rights while at the same time make sure we are all safe.”
There has been a lot of back and forth on this budget here in the County. We all recognize that we are now paying for the past sins (laziness, wasteful spending, cronyism, you name it) and corruption of past leaders. But read these two statements from the newspapers. It gives you an idea of just how inbred the entitlement mentality is among some County workers.
"The union has refused to make concessions that would allow him to reduce costs, including overtime, he said. Joseph Piazaa, Prison Warden, Luzerne County. I’ve asked the union over and over and over again, and I keep getting the same old answer – no,”
And my question to the union leadership is WHY?
Then there’s this: The courts received $23.6 million in 2011 and face $400,000 in county-mandated union pay increases in 2012, he said. The new allocation: $20.77 million.
“We’re in a holding pattern and will continue to review our options,” Burke said.
$400,000 in county mandated union pay increases this year! Judge Burke and a few others better continue to review options because this thing isn’t going to fix itself. The Corruption case has left a stain on this county that will take years to fix. But this current budget battle is going to do something much worse with the taxpaying public. With the unions in the prison giving the Warden a hard time, and the Courts having to pay mandated county wages there will be little patience or good will left among the tax paying public. It’s one thing for people not to trust their government. It’s quite dangerous when the people who support it with their tax dollars begin to hate it.
Karel Zubris has a single minded goal as far as the Coal Street Ice Rink is concerned. She wants everyone to skate at that rink. The woman is persistent in her pursuit of promoting the rink and her association with teaching people how to skate.Monday at 4PM, she prevails upon WBRE TV's PA Live’s Dave Kuharchik to don the skates and do his thing. When WYLN TV 35 did a remote broadcast of “Topic A” from the Coal Street rink, Karel got L.A. Tarone to take a turn on the ice. Check out PA Live tomorrow afternoon at 4PM as Karel Zubris teaches one of the best weatherman a thing or two about ice.
There are people who try to be famous and fail. Then there are people who just go about living their lives and boom, fame find them. That happened this week with WNEP TV’s Joe Snedeker. The Sned and I share the same birthday as well as the same disdain for winter weather. When in the midst of a snow storm that makes travel impassible and Snedeker calls it “Death”, I’m with him. When he refers to the cold winter as “the dearth of all living things”, I’m down with that. Jimmy Kimmel played a clip of The Sned on his late night show this week where “our Joe” reacted to critical e mails accusing the weather guy of not liking cold weather. He explained that he doesn’t. Then got off on a tangent about liking co workers. It was classic. Here’s a You Tube clip from the Kimmel show, it’s not the best quality but you get the point. In the meantime Joe, keep on keepin’ on.