Thursday, April 17, 2014

The LuLac Edition #2637, April 17th, 2014

MERICLE’S SENTENCE

Developer Rob Mericle. (Photo: Citizen’s Voice).

So everyone is buzzing about whether business developer Rob Mericle is going to get jail time for his role in the Ciavarella/Conahan Corruption trial. The Times Leader had snippets of some letters written to Judge Edwin Kosik from local people who think Mericle should get a break. All wax poetic about his abilities and kindness. And all of it is true. I worked in a Mericle Building in the 90s when a man who worked in another office died all too young and suddenly. Mericle was there for the business and the family. The stories of his largess and kindness are legendary. At the Ciavarella trial where the former Judge was convicted of one count of racketeering, four counts of mail fraud, three counts of conspiracy and four counts of filing false tax returns Mericle testified that the Judge was a friend and mentor to him when he went to the Catholic Youth Center in Wilkes Barre as a boy. Mericle has plead guilty to not reporting a felony.
Mericle admits guilt. So, what should his punishment be? Would it do this community any good for him to serve jail time? Was Mericle gaining financially from the doings of these two Judges? If anything Mericle was guilty of trying to help a former coach and mentor keep up with the lavish lifestyle of Mr. Conahan.
There are those who will say that Mericle’s money was the root of the evil that became the tragedy in Luzerne County. Crazy stuff. If there was no Rob Mericle to fund the enterprise, you can bet Bob Powell and Conahan would have found another funding source to dangle in front of Mark Ciavarella.
Here’s what Mericle’s sentence should be. He should be ordered to serve for a dollar a day as the Head of the Wilkes Barre Chamber of Commerce. Currently the Chamber is doing a nationwide search for a person who is going to be charged to stimulate our woeful economy. An economy and business culture that hasn’t been revived in fifty years despite high price mouthpieces and big shots who have done nothing but depress wages of working people and enrich themselves.
Mericle has proven he could develop businesses. He has proven he can build and understand the infrastructure of our area. If Mericle didn’t exist, the Chamber would not have anything to beat their chest about. I say sentence him to work as CEO of the Chamber, pay him a dollar a day and everybody wins. During the Depression and the war, Franklin Roosevelt got wealthy business people, trust fund babies and men of means with education, experience and talent and got a bargain in the process. We should do the same, convicted felon or not.
The Wilkes Barre Chamber has been a joke for many years, almost as funny as those goofy Cabbage Patch kids from the 80s. If Mericle started his successful business empire selling ugly dolls, imagine what he can do with an ugly and inert business climate engendered by the Wilkes Barre Chamber of Commerce? I think I’ll send this idea to Judge Kosik.


WOLF AHEAD OF THE PACK

Pashinski And Flynn Endorse Wolf In His Bid For Governor

Candidate for Governor Tom Wolf. (Photo: LuLac archives).
NEPA Leaders Stand Behind Wolf
Tom Wolf this week received the backing of State Representatives Eddie Day Pashinski and Marty Flynn in his bid for governor. The Northeast Pennsylvania leaders came together to support Wolf citing his plan to invest in education, his call to make gas companies pay their fair share, and his support for cities like Scranton and Wilkes-Barre.
Representative Eddie Day Pashinsk who is serving his fourth term in the 121st District said: “Tom Wolf has a commonsense plan to restore much needed resources to our education system and make gas companies pay their fair share. Cities like Wilkes-Barre have suffered economically while gas companies have been let off the hook. I know Tom Wolf will stand with Pennsylvania families and that’s why I am standing with him.”
Representative Marty Flynn who is a Freshman Representative from the 113th allowed: “Tom Wolf has made education his number one priority, and my priority is to help him get elected. Scranton public schools are in disrepair, and the state is holding money that we desperately need to repair our schools’infrastructure. Northeast Pennsylvania cannot afford more funding cuts and broken promises – Tom Wolf will give our region the fresh start it needs to grow.”
“I am humbled to earn the support of Representatives Pashinski and Flynn,” said Tom Wolf. “Each of these leaders cares deeply about their community and understands that if Pennsylvania is to grow and thrive, we must invest in our future by focusing on education and standing up for middle-class families. I look forward to working with Eddie and Marty to help Northeast Pennsylvania grow.”

CARTWRIGHT AND SHERMAN HILLS


U.S. Representative Matt Cartwright. (Photo: LuLac archives).
The Sherman Hills Task Force, led by U.S. Representative Matt Cartwright, met with John Van Metre, Director of Property Management at The Aspen Companies, a related company of Treetop Development that handles affordable housing complexes.
Aspen Companies has been successful in turning around troubled properties around the country, mainly in Chicago and Atlanta, and currently manages 15 affordable housing complexes.
“Speaking for myself and the entire Task Force, we were pleased to make the acquaintance of John Van Metre and encouraged by his willingness to sit down with us informally to share his plans. We were also heartened by his desire that the Task Force continue in existence in order to partner with the new enterprise,” said Cartwright. “I think it’s a new beginning, and there is every reason for optimism at this point.”
Van Metre noted his company’s commitment and previous success with community engagement and is determined to do the same at Sherman Hills. Specifically, Van Metre referenced working closely with the Task Force to develop programs such as after school activities, creating an active and engaged tenants association, and building a strong relationship with the Wilkes-Barre Police Department.
“Cooperation and communication often leads to positive results– and our continued positive dialogue with Treetop Development, HUD and local law enforcement will help us better serve and protect all NEPA families from crime and violence,” State Sen. John Yudichak said.
Aspen Companies will continue work to strengthen the complex’s security and is moving forward to obtain the necessary permits to do so. Additionally, the management company is preparing to make immediate cosmetic improvements to demonstrate their commitment to changing the atmosphere.
“We welcome John Van Metre to northeastern Pennsylvania and the city of Wilkes-Barre, and we offer our complete cooperation and commitment to making sure that Sherman Hills is a property that is safe for not only its residents, but the people of Wilkes-Barre,” said State Rep. Eddie Day Pashinski. “I am encouraged by Van Metre’s positive approach and the fact that he has successfully managed properties of similar status. The Task Force emphasized that all representatives of the federal, state, county and city are united as one body in ensuring that we achieve the goal of providing a safe property that we can all be proud of.”
Referencing yesterday’s surprise inspection of Sherman Hills by the Office of the Inspector General, Van Metre seemed dismayed, but noted that the ongoing investigation concerns the prior owner’s financial practices.
In early February and again in March, Cartwright met with HUD Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator, Jane Vincent, to receive an update on the progress of Sherman Hills. At these meetings, Cartwright, on behalf of the Task Force, insisted in the event of a possible sale that any new owner must make the repairs that have already been promised.
The Task Force was formed in response to a late 2013 report by HUD, which paid Sherman Hills $1.7 million in 2013 to provide low-income housing at the 344-unit complex, about deficiencies and safety problems at the property.
Members of the Task Force are Congressman Matt Cartwright (PA-17); Tom Leighton, Mayor, Wilkes-Barre; John Yudichak, State Senator (PA-14); Eddie Pashinski, State Representative (PA-121); Bill Barrett, Chairperson, Wilkes-Barre City Council; Maureen Lavelle, Councilwoman, Wilkes-Barre City Council; George Brown, Councilman, Wilkes-Barre City Council; Tim McGinley, Chair, Luzerne County Council; Harry Haas, Councilman, Luzerne County Council; Edd Brominski, Councilman, Luzerne County Council; Eileen Sorokas, Councilwoman-Elect, Luzerne County; Ron Felton, President, Wilkes-Barre NAACP; Rev. Shawn Walker, Pastor, First Baptist Church; Angel Jirau, Executive Director, Spanish American Leaders Serving All.


MEDIA MATTERS



ECTV


For over 200 weeks ECTV Live has been bringing viewers information on events, services and entertainment. ECTV Live hosts David DeCosmo and Rusty Fender will be looking for you input after their series of programs during the week of April 21st! Keith Williams from the Center for Independent Living will be their guest. He'll outline plans to improve voting polling places for people with disabilities after voters in this May's Primary election provide some feedback on the situation at their individual polling place! ECTV Live can be seen on Comcast Ch19throughout the week. The initial telecast is presented Live on Monday's a Noon. The program is also recorded and played numerous time throughout the week.



SUNDAY MAGAZINE

This Week on Sunday Magazine
Brian Hughes speaks with Bridget Kane from the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership about their Bike & River Fest in South Williamsport on Saturday May 10th.
Brian speaks with Alyssa Maria from Home Instead senior Care and Audrey Milford from Wilkes Barre, who was named as the 2014 Outstanding Senior Volunteer in Pennsylvania.
Magic 93's Frankie in the Morning speaks with Nicole Ash about Autism Awareness Month observed during the month of April.
And Brian speaks with travel guru Chris McGuiness about the best travel deals for the Spring & Summer months.
Sunday Magazine, Sunday morning at 5am on NASH-FM, 93.7, 5:30am on 97BHT, 6am on 97.9X, 6:25am on Magic 93, and 7am on True Oldies 590, WARM.


BOLD GOLD COMMUNITY FORUM

This Sunday on Community Forum, Mike Remish discusses Earth Day with Barbara Giovagnioli from the Lackawanna County Office on Environmental Sustainability. The show airs at 6 am on 94.3 fm The Talker, 6:30 on The Game Sports Radio Network 1340/1400 am and 106.7 fm, and at 7:30 on 105 The River.


SUE HENRY’S SPECIAL EDITION

Tune in to Sue Henry's "Special Edition" this week as Sue recaps the week's news. Special Edition is heard Saturdays and Sunday on these Entercom stations, WILK FM Saturday at 2pm Sunday at 6 am on Froggy 101 Sunday at 7 am on The Sports Hub 102.3 Sunday at 7 am on K R Z 98.5 Sunday at noon on WILK FM 103.1.


BUDDY RUMCHEK

Want to hear some great parodies on the news? Tune in to WILK Radio at 6:40 and 8:40 AM on Mondays. As Ralph Cramden used to say, “It’s a laugh riot!”

KAREL ON THE STREET

Tune in Wednesdays on WILK Radio for Karel on the Street. Hear some of the funniest and heartwarming comments on the issues of the day on Webster and Nancy with Karel Zubris.


Our 1974 logo.

1974

Forty years ago today NBC Newsman and Today Show Host Frank McGee died of bone cancer at the age of 52. 
The Today Show team of Joe Garagiola, Frank Blair (who made a stop at WEJL Radio in Scranton), Barbara Walters and Frank McGee. (Photo: TV Guide).
McGee was host of The Today Show from 1971 to 1974 a short tenure but in that time McGee made it into a serious news show. McGee was a floor correspondent for the national conventions of both political parties in 1960, 1964, and 1968, one member of the so-called "Four Horsemen" that included NBC newsmen John Chancellor, Edwin Newman, and Sander Vanocur McGee also served as a radio reporter for the old NBC News Monitor series. He also reported on the Space Missions of the 1960s, had a very provocative interview with Martin Luther King Junior in which King said he thought often about the possibility of assassination. McGee was on the air nonstop for John Kennedy’s assassination coverage and ironically was on the air the night Robert Kennedy was assassinated in 1968.
McGee (left) with Bill Ryan (right) on the set the night of November 22nd, 1963 when JFK was killed. (Photo: NBC News).
McGee always had firm command of the show making sure he opened and ended the show as well as any important interview much to the consternation of Barbra Walters. McGee was one of the very best reporters and had a vivid way of describing an event. If you were growing up in the 60s and watched NBC Frank McGee was a constant in your life. He died very young and there was so much potential ahead for him. When Mrs. LuLac and I were planning a date for our wedding, we first decided on the 17th but moved it back as to not conflict with the anniversary of Mr. McGee’s death. Here is video of Frank McGee at the launch of Apollo 11……

In Pennsylvania Senator Richard Schweiker said on his radio program that the foreign policy of America was not at risk during the Watergate controversy. The first term Senator running for re-election opined that the world was safe with Vice President Ford and Henry Kissinger on the Nixon team. Schweiker was critical though of President Nixon’s reluctance to come clean over Watergate……on the West Side State Representative Frank O’Connell campaigning in Kingston without primary opposition advises that he will run hard for reelection in the Fall despite a huge GOP advantage in his District…….and forty years ago this week in America and LuLac land the number one song in America and LuLac land was TSOP, The Sound of Philadelphia by MFBS one of many instrumental hits of 1974.

20 Comments:

At 8:11 PM, Blogger Mark Cour said...

Really?

He created numerous fork-lift jobs and countless opportunities for TJTC-eligible implants from the big cities, but he should run the chamber?

Dude, try visiting the half-million square foot structures with employee parking lots the size of mini-markets, and then you'll realize that what he's created is personal wealth.

He is a ruse, nothing more.

Been there, seen that.

Markie

 
At 11:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yonki has gone off te deep end. In the tank for Wolf and Cartwright.....now this thing with Mericle.
I'm really wondering what the hell I'm going to read next.
One thing about Dave, he'll a;ways keep us guessing and on our toes.

 
At 9:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mericle is vastly more than a ruse. Yeah, the guy got rich, and he pled guilty to crimes, but like it or not he did a lot of good for this area, and not just by creating "fork lift jobs".

There are a lot of charities, organizations, and programs that will be a lot worse off when the Mericle tap shuts off. What's not-so-funny is that the same people calling for his head, like Saint Stevie Corbett, will be screaming about charities that help the poor and disadvantaged who have less money and can't help people who need it, and that'll be in large part because this man's sent off to prison.

He's going to do time, and it's going to be much more than what is deserved for the crime he pled guilty to, but Yonk's right on this one. He should be put to better use in the community rather than rotting in jail. There can be a win-win here, where he pays for what he did, but also is productive for society in the process.

 
At 1:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the crime guidelines call for jail, ya go to jail. Regardless of the good deeds or popularity of the convicted. Although he wouldnt be the only criminal in political office or the only self centered jerk at the chamber its just not the place for him! He serves time because he is guilty and even his money couldnt buy him out of it! You surprise and disappoint me with this call, Dave. One thing you got right, the chambers in both Scranton and WB are and have long been a joke headed by overpaid
egomaniacs. Personally I'd rather see Dave Yonki in charge at the chamber. He cares more about the area and its people than all of them put together and he understands whats goin on with the real people.

JP

 
At 4:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You really are a (edit). Take one of the people who triggered one of the biggest judicial scandals in US history, and make him the face of local business and industry. Mericle should be scrubbing toilets for a dollar, not running the place. Please, continue (edit) Your "original" thoughts (edit) (edit) (edit) (edit).

 
At 5:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dave, you're idea is out there but I agree with one of the posters. Mericle can do more out of jail than in.
Also I'm so glad you are keeping us informed of Mr. Wolf's campaign. I was for Mr. McCord but got turned off by his ads touting his tough upbringing. What a slap in the face to his step father.
Also the 1974 research is outstanding. Keep it up. I used to watch Soul Train all the time in the Lehigh Valley.

 
At 5:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Dave, great thoughts on Frank McGee. I liked him on Today and was stunned when they opened the show on that day and told the world he had died.

 
At 11:26 PM, Blogger Mark Cour said...

"There are a lot of charities, organizations, and programs that will be a lot worse off when the Mericle tap shuts off."

All tax-deductible from the King of KOZ.

There were the imprisoned folks who took the funny money, and there was the guy who was offering it...your newly-anointed saint.

Finger down the throat time.

 
At 11:33 PM, Blogger Mark Cour said...

"There are a lot of charities, organizations, and programs that will be a lot worse off when the Mericle tap shuts off."

He's a KOZ squatter, and his donations are all tax-deductible.

Some people take bribes, still others offer them.

Filth begets more filth.

 
At 7:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Money can't buy you love, but sure can go a long way towards a reduced prison sentence. Mericle's money is blood money, ill gotten and tainted. There is no provision in the law (not written anyway) that having money exonerates a person from wrondoing. his actions have helped give nepa a black eye, no matter what else he has done.

 
At 1:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Posters frequently reference local talk show host Steve Corbett usually negatively for such things as going after people. Lets face facts. Steve Corbett is a non factor! His opinions are no more valid than yours or mine. I listened to him for awhile, theres not much choice if you are out in the car in the afternoon and not interested in music. He has a personal agenda defined by, he or she didnt return his phone calls. Why would anyone return his calls? He in my opinion is not a reporter. He is the host of a call in radio show and his job as he apparently sees it is to create controversy. Fred Williams, Kevin Lynn and Steve Corbett are all of the same ilk. Guys with oversized egos who eventually disappear and are not missed. Relax its show business.
Can anyone remember Morton Downey Jr?

RGB

 
At 1:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dont comment critically or heaven forbid criticize WILK or the hosts on Lulac because no matter how well thought out or sound your comments are they just wont appear! Its a glaring error in an otherwise good local site. Meanwhile the local WILKers can comment and tear apart anything or anybody they wish! Interesting double standard in place
here, but thats how it has been and how it will be and its Yonki's decision and his site. Too bad.

Long Time Lulacer

 
At 2:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's why Corbett, the Doctor on the Talker and everyone else in Talk Radio past and present in this area is a non factor: the people here don't give a shit. They are content to take minumum wage like jobs, if they have a relative who knows somebody that's a bonus but all they care about is beer, pizza, and the next big holiday. Just look at how many houses decorate for Valetine's Day and Easter but don't have flags out anywhere.
Non factors, yes but not because they aren't trying like hell!

 
At 2:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I double checked Lulac today and found that I owe Mr Yonki an apology.
If my later comment had anything to do with it so be it, but Sir I apologize. Now can I tell you what I really think of WILK and the personalities on air? No I'll stop while I'm ahead.

Long Timer

 
At 5:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did you ever see starlight
Rushing from the skies
Heading for home
In a certain someone's eyes
Uh uh huh, that's my builder,
Talking bout my builder and I love him
He's a Robert Meracle (ooh, ooh)
He's a Robert Meracle (ooh, ooh)

 
At 7:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Sad Part is that in recent years I have been going to the polls to vote against someone rather than for someone else. That will be the case again this time around. I'd most likely vote for almost anyone rather than Corbett. He gives me the creeps!
As for Bob Mericle I think he has earned a stint in jail. We cant keep allowing those with money to avoid their just punishment.

 
At 11:56 PM, Blogger David Yonki said...

IN RESPONSE
I double checked Lulac today and found that I owe Mr Yonki an apology.
If my later comment had anything to do with it so be it, but Sir I apologize. Now can I tell you what I really think of WILK and the personalities on air? No I'll stop while I'm ahead.
NO APOLOGY NEEDED.SOMETIMES COMMENTS COME TO THE BLOGSITE, SOME TO THE E MAIL BOX. ON WILK, I POSTED YOUR COMMENT BECAUSE IT HAD TO DO WITH WHAT THE ISSUE WAS ABOUT. STEVE CORBETT DOES LAMENT THE FACT THAT CERTAIN PEOPLE DON'T CALL HIM BUT THAT'S USUALLY AFTER HE MAKES THEM UNCOMFORTABLE THE FIRST TIME. TALK RADIO NEEDS PEOPLE WHO WE HOLD ACCOUNTABLE UNCOMFORTABLE, THAT'S HIS JOB.
ON THE ISSUE OF NOT POSTING COMMENTS, I WILL NOT PUT THROUGH CERTAIN COMMENTS REGARDING THE HOSTS OF SHOWS ON THE STATION, WILK OR OTHERS. USUALLY THEY ARE OUT OF LINE. THERE ARE THOSE WHO THINK IT IS BECAUSE I AM A GUEST ON WILK PROGRAMS. BUT THE FACT IS I MODERATE MORE COMMENTS ABOUT COUNTY COUNCIL MEMBERS, PRESIDENT OBAMA AND MAYOR TOM LEIGHTON. THE COMMENTS WE GET ARE TOUGH, SCATOLOGICAL AND BORDERING ON SLANDER. RIGHT FROM THE START WHEN I BEGAN LULAC EIGHT YEARS AGO THAT WAS THE DEAL BREAKER FOR ME. THAT'S WHY I STARTED DOING THIS.
SO KEEP READING, KEEP WRITING AND WHILE I APPRECIATE YOUR SUBSEQUENT POST, AN APOLOGY WAS NOT NECESSARY.

 
At 12:04 AM, Blogger David Yonki said...

IN RESPONSE
Yonki has gone off te deep end. In the tank for Wolf and Cartwright.....now this thing with Mericle.
I'M DOING IT FOR THE GREEN. YEP I'M IN THE TANK FOR EVERYBODY WHICH IS WHY I'M STILL DRIVING A 6 YEAR OLD CAR AND IN THE MANSION ON N. MAIN STREET SANDWICHED BETWEEN KING'S COLLEGE STUDENTS. (WHO BY THE WAY THIS YEAR ARE GREAT CITIZENS AND NEIGHBORS!) BUT EVEN IF I WAS MIKE PASONICK'S NEIGHBOR AND DRIVING A HAWAII 5-0 CAMARO CONVERTIBLE, I'D STILL BE WRITING THE SAME STUFF.

 
At 1:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yonk, it is amazing the attitude of some of the people who see no value in what Mericle has done with his life. here is no other single person who has done more for our area than Mericle and they want him crucified..... I guess it is approriate for the Easter season. I honestly feel that many of these people would have been in the crowd cheering for Barabus if they were given the chance. If my other half was no so deep in her career and a few years away from retirement, I would pack up and leave this area and never look back. Thank God for level heads such as your's because there are so few with a voice of reason. Thank you for all you do and thank you for keeping both feet firmly planted in common sense.

 
At 9:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting to hear The Blogfather subscribe to Obama-like class warfare rhetoric. If a rich guy takes advantage of KOZ breaks (legal and sanctioned by the State) and tax deductions (legal and sanctioned by the Feds) he's to be run up the flagpole?

Yes he is an admitted criminal and will go to jail in spite of what he did in the community. However to suggest that he only did what good he did to get a lighter sentence is a joke. He's been doing good in the community for a long time, and it is sad when his good works get shot down the tubes. But it is true, one oh $hit wipes out 100000's of atta-boys.

 

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