Thursday, March 21, 2013

McClure Misses Meeting Involving Gracedale and His Own District

At yesterday's meeting of the Northampton County Council Finance Committee, a decision was made that could have a positive or deleterious effect on Gracedale, and will definitely have an adverse impact on Nazareth. But Lamont McClure, who is supposed to represent the Nazareth District on Council, was absent as usual. So was Council member Bruce Gilbert, a lame duck. McClure would like to be County Executive, and claims he is  Gracedale's Savior. But he was MIA for a meeting concerning the nursing home and its relationship with an ambulance service within his own district..

At issue was nonemergency ambulance service to Gracedale, which is currently provided by Nazareth Ambulance. Gracedale Administrator Millard D. Freeman, employed by Premier Healthcare Resources, is recommending a switch to Lifestar. Their $225,000 per year proposal is much lower than the $311,556 bid from Nazareth Ambulance. The company has agreed to pay a performance bond. The wages it pays its workers are equivalent to what is paid to Nazareth. And Lifestar is bound by a requirement that at least 80% of its workforce must consist of Lehigh Valley residents. So on paper, it seems like the better deal.

Peg Ferraro, who counts on Nazareth for much of her support and is facing re-election, is opposed to the switch. She wants to stay with Nazareth. "They live here, they work here, they pay taxes here," she said.

But Freeman countered, "You said you wanted us to run Gracedale more like a business and that's what we're doing."

Council President John Cusick added, "Taxpayers who don't live in Nazareth are indirectly subsidizing an ambulance company."

Ken Kraft seemed satisfied with the proposal once he learned that performance is guaranteed and that the workforce must be 80% local.

Is this good or bad for Gracedale? It's good for the bottom line, to be sure. But is a good bottom line good for the residents? Does it make sense to replace an ambulance service that knows the residents and their peculiarities with a bigger one that does not?

Just today, I was told by a Gracedale supporter that the $2.5 million in employee givebacks has made it harder to maintain the same quality of care. I am told that it has become much more demanding on the employee, which might explain why the Medicare ratings have dropped from three to two stars. Now, an ambulance service with strangers will replace those who know the residents.

This might be the right choice. I believe we have an obligation to support the choices made by Premier and Freeman, who have excellent track records. McClure was busy yesterday, circulating a flyer about Gracedale that uses actors, not actual residents or workers.

31 comments:

Anonymous said...

The early Lamont McClure mailer has the Callahan gang going crazy. Their candidate is polling badly and the mailer did not help.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Where was McClure when the people's business was being conducted concerning both Gracedale and his own district?

Anonymous said...

The people's business is and should be conducted at County Council meetings. Committee meetings are no excuse for the full council meetings. No more shortcuts. People have rspect for Mr. McClure for not going along with the secret government by committee model.

Anonymous said...

"The early Lamont McClure mailer has the Callahan gang going crazy. Their candidate is polling badly and the mailer did not help"

you're funny. keep telling yourself that. hug your delusions to you like a warm blanket.

Anonymous said...

LMAO..... Ha ha ha, first comment is just too funny not to spit my coffee through my nose.

Seamus

Anonymous said...

What mailer? Must have been sent to a small universe since he lacks money to send it county wide.

McClure has no name recognition and a small but loyal support base. He has no logical path to victory.

Reibman has fleck. Enough said. That will be his downfall.

Uncle Remus said...

McClueless is nothing but a bump in the road for the Callahan caravan. He will still be clueless when Callahan is County Exec.

Anonymous said...

We constantly complain about our congressmen screwing the taxpayers by voting for pork barrel projects. Pork Barrel programs are programs that are in the Congressmens district and ussually cost more to provide than other vendors. Here we have a case of a pork barrel project at Gracedale and what happens? Our Council person Peg Ferraro acts like a Congressman and supports the pork. We need to get rid of these office holders that support pork and refuse to cut where waste is evident.

Anonymous said...

Peg Ferraro argued to overspend on the contract by 38%. She's either retarded or just plain evil and inconsiderate of taxpayers who are trying to keep their homes in this economy.

38%! Is she as stupid with her own money as she is with ours? Or is she using the rest of the county's tax money to buy very expensive votes in Nazareth? If she's just stupid, that's one thing. If she's doing this by design, she's just plain rotten.

Between her and that jailbird boro council, what the hell is going on in Nazareth?

Anonymous said...

On the local level, 100 thousand dollars is no small chunk of change, and for it to be for one service such as ambulance makes it even more evident that talk is cheap but representation by our Council Representatives (namely Peg) is non existent.

Anonymous said...

My best guess is the McClure political flyers were sent only to registered Dem's. as they were addressed by family name and not just resident. Gracedale should not be the only topic during the primary but Lamont has thrown down the gauntlet and is making his stand at the high rise in Upper Naz. Twsp.

Anonymous said...

I've already cut McBore's mailing into 8 equal pieces and will be wiping my ass with them for at least the next 8 days, who's next in the mail to my bathroom collection?

Anonymous said...

McClure..by his own admission and pride/ego..and HIS plan..to hire Premier..has made life miserable for his union supporters and the people they care for at Gracedale. They gave and continue to give and what has been the result? Facility rating dropped. Why? Cutbacks in staff and services and stressed out workers who can't keep up with the assembly line management initiatives. A recipe for disaster. Thanks for your help Lamont!

Anonymous said...

The process of bringing entitled unions to heel is painful, especially after politicians like McClueless and Barron got you worked into an entitled frenzy during the ballot referendum campaign. As was stated numerous times then, you won the battle and lost the war - for yourselves, your patients and your taxpaying bosses. The election did not change Gracedale's economics.

Anonymous said...

That is a fair assessment of the current situation and darn accurate. COAF has become a political front for the old guard D party. It has become passe and is infected and been co-opted by an egomaniac with a mustache who fancies himself a KING maker. Sorry Mario..you had your 15 minutes..

Bernie O'Hare said...

"The people's business is and should be conducted at County Council meetings. Committee meetings are no excuse for the full council meetings. No more shortcuts."

Gotta' love this excuse for laziness.

Anonymous said...

Bernie I agree with your take on the ambulance service.
The bigger company is squeezing out the smaller ones. in the near future we will not have any bidders. There will only be Lifestar. What will they charge us then. We need to think and plan beyoun today, Nazareth has had NO complaints or problems and and can and will handle any growth. If they lose this then we will see 1/2 of our county neighbors and friends without a job and on the unemployment line. Some may lose their homes to foreclosure bringing down the price for their neighbors. This is a snowball effect and should not happen. People think this won't cost us....what lamebrains. Keep Nazareth ambulance where even the owner lives here. Just a side note. Lifestar was picked for a little savings now and the management wants to keep their jobs. This is not right for Northampton county residents.

Anonymous said...

Lamont's mailer, ha! Did anyone actually see it? Chock full of stock photos, including a very hairy man in a nurses' uniform with the following endorsement: "The Coalition of Alzheimer's Families supports Lamont McClure for County Executive." Now there's a big get. I'm sure Callahan is going to pack it in given that endorsement. Wow. Any campaign sending out a singular piece of mail 2 months before a municipal election without the benefit of polling isn't a show of strength, it's proof of an utterly clueless operation.

Anonymous said...

"Wow. Any campaign sending out a singular piece of mail 2 months before a municipal election without the benefit of polling isn't a show of strength, it's proof of an utterly clueless operation."

You can tell Morganelli is behind McClure and Donchez. Both sent out mailers this week. What a waste of money. Voters will forget these mailers before the end of the week.

John Q. Public said...

I would really like to hear it from the Councilman and Candidate why he wasn't at the Committee meeting. But I doubt he will have any transparency. Instead I have to read these defensive bloggers post comments that insult my intelligence. The more these questions go unanswered, the more I wouldn't even vote to retain him on Council, let alone as an elected dog-catcher. I guess he still doesn't get it. It is not a one issue race. And he didn't even have the decency to show for a committee meeting that involved almost all of his constituency. Can someone really be that dumb and lazy? I guess we will have to answer that for ourselves, since he is putting us in that situation. Because he doesn't want to make a decision that will make him look bad, he makes himself look even worse. Part of the duties of the positions are making a decision, appearing for meetings, and doing the work to prepare. If he can't at least appear, why would anyone choose to vote for him? It can't all be about money, Gracedale, and unions. If so and he wins, we deserve every piece of crap that we get from him. No way, this guy should even come close to winning. And if the other candidates do not point this out and inform voters, than we really deserve the government we get and I am moving to Canada.

Oh yeah. Is Mezzacappa's blog still up and running? Or did she just fall off the face of the Earth. I am so thankful that she does not have any children. Can you imagine being raised by her?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Mezzacappa's blog has Poofed, and it will hopefully stay that way.

Anonymous said...

I read her blog last night and once again she was saying that the tasered teen should have been shot.

COAF supports her. They also are pushing for McClure, which is why he won't be getting my vote. The fact that McClure embraces a group that authors such an incredibly poor written blog is another.

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen or heard anything that the COAF supports Mezzacappa. Only Lamont and they should he was there for them and the 23,000 plus that signed the petition to keep Gracedale county owned. Where was Callahan with the Gracedale fight no where he was contacted and he didn't have the time for it. Funny that he knew where Gracedale was when it was time to annouce he was running for executive.

Anonymous said...

I have been told that Lamont McClure is the only county council person willing to ask Stoffa tough questions.

Anonymous said...

"I have been told that Lamont McClure is the only county council person willing to ask Stoffa tough questions."


yes, like "what time was that committee meeting yesterday?"

Joseph F. Bazooka said...

I guess this question is relative and depends on which side of the fence you are on. But is it a good or a bad thing if Steve Barron endorses your candidacy?

Bernie O'Hare said...

"I haven't seen or heard anything that the COAF supports Mezzacappa. "

They endorsed her when she ran for W Estn Boro Council and have supported,allowing her to post all kinds of hateful comments, and then joining in with their own hate. They have made no attempt to distance themselves from her and have attended several functions with her. I think it's fair to tag them with her.

Anonymous said...

Gracedale is now officially a Northampton County Public Welfare Program that can only exist if given sprcial concessions and county tax dollars.

Anonymous said...

McClure might still have a real job since he still has his law license, unlike you, who has been thoroughly discredited for malfeasance. So it makes sense that sometimes he can't make meetings but idle dolts like you can't grasp the work concept.

Anonymous said...

Then he shouldn`t have run for office. He can go back to Weatherly.

Anonymous said...

is that the best you got? lol