Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Donchez, Reynolds Both Impress at Block Watch Meeting

Bob Donchez
No matter who you support for Bethlehem Mayor, you had to walk away impressed at last night's West Bethlehem Block Watch meeting with candidates Bob Donchez and Willie Reynolds. Both of them really looked good. Willie displayed a youthful energy and drive, while Bob exhibited his trademark laid back style.    I would say that Bob's style suits Bethlehem voters better, but they have shown they like young Mayors. One thing is very clear. Reynolds is in this to win, not just show.

For the most part, the two candidates agreed. They both oppose a single trash hauler. They both support zoned hauling. Naturally, they will both do whatever they can to avoid more tax hikes. They both would like to get more services or small donations from nonprofits.

Their biggest disagreement focused on Willie's proposal for districted Council seats. Willie points out that places like West Bethlehem have had no representation on City Council since 1995. He feels that district seats would make it cheaper to run, reducing the influence of money on politics. He also points out it would be more small d democratic.

Bob counters that districts are fine in larger municipalities, but not Bethlehem. He worries that "we would begin to pit district against district," and that parochialism would rear its ugly head. He argued that the real problem is more people need to run for office, pointing out that there are only 6 candidate seeking 4 seats.

Willie Reynolds
Both of them favor more transparency. Reynolds talked about "bringing City Hall to you" at various neighborhood committees. Donchez pointedly said that the books will be open to City Council and that he would have an "open door" policy as Mayor, setting aside days where people could walk in and talk to him without an appointment.

The only sour note of the night came when a woman in the audience told Donchez she was "very disturbed" by his negative flyer about Reynolds, quoting his "hot girlfriend" remark. Moderator Gus Loupos declared that topic off limits.

It was a contrast of youthful exuberance with genial experience with two well-qualified candidates.

Donchez and Reynolds will face each other again on May 2, 6:30 PM, Prosser Auditorium, Moravian College. Don Cunningham will moderate. He knows a little bit about being Mayor of Bethlehem.

18 comments:

Uncle Remus said...

where do they stand on video taping council meetings?

have either of them actually ever visited the city work sites except for public safety?

will they upgrade the computer system in City hall?

will they privatize the golf course, grass cutting, the city garage, the ice skating ring to save real money and future legacy costs?

where do they stand on the waste treatment plant and water resources?

they should answer these questions instead of pandering to specific groups

talk real issues, spell out specifics, show the savings

they can't and won't - nothing but fluff

Anonymous said...

Rocky_Balboa said to Uncle Remus...

I cannot believe that I agree with you... !

Uncle Remus said...

scary, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

As someone who was there last evening, and just came here because I wanted to Bernie's write up, I have to say to Remus that the candidates simply responded to the questions posed by Gus, which came from the group.

If you want those questions answered, you should submit questions to the league of women's voters forum..

Anonymous said...

Donchez sound awesome
what party is he with? I really believe he is going to make himself accessible to the people.

Anonymous said...

Why was Donchez's mudslinging off limits? It backfired by painting him as a creepy old lech. The man's character, or lack thereof, is more important than any other issue.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Hey Uncle Remus, If you are sch an expert, why not form your own candidates' night and invite them? You won't do that bc you are, in the end, a coward afraid to identify yourself, but are more than willing to make uninformed attacks.

As has already been explained, the candidates were answering the questions they were asked. And they were asked about ptivatizing the golf course.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"Why was Donchez's mudslinging off limits?"

You'll have to ask Gus. He wanted to keep the night positive.

Vince said...

Bethlehem needs a needle exchange program, im getting tired of giving people hepatitis

Anonymous said...

Bob wants to let the handful of disgrunted ex-employees and self-proclaimed financial wizards who come to every Council meeting help him run the CIty. This alone shows he is not the right man for the job. He also said he will set up time for anyone to come in and talk to him. Guess he must have watched Lincoln recently. Also, people should not want a Mayor who just sits around waiting for people to pop in. We need a Mayor who will be out there pushing for economic development. Unfortunately Bob is not that Mayor.

Anonymous said...

Donchez's mailer was creepy and should have been discussed. Voters have a right to know if someone running for mayor is a sex creep. The mailer raises serious questions.

Bernie O'Hare said...

God, what a nutty thing to say. When are you getting out of the can?

Uncle Remus said...

I didn't attack. I just asked questions. If I had asked the same on a post about king ed you would applauded it. but you don't like that your horse donchez might be questioned by an insider.You have a very good idea exactly who I am and what my credentals are so you know why I use an assumed name.

these are real issues and they both are pandering to latinos and other groups. your own post says there are more important issues that civil unions or whatever you want to call it.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Uncle Remus, You are an attack troll. You attack everyone and offer nothing. I have no idea who you are or why you use an assumed name. What I do know is that you are unwilling to take responsibility. I don't mind when it is directed at elected officials. Some of it is even funny. But you have started attacking private citizens who care. You have gone too far here, whether posting as Uncle Remus or Mark Baker. Start being a bit more substantive. Before you bray about the quality of questions at a citizens' meeting, look in a mirror and ask yourself why you, who weren't there, can still snark everyone.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"they both are pandering to latinos and other group"

That's what you do in an election. You respond to the concerns that interest different demographics. I am sure they will also try to appeal to angry white bigots.

Uncle Remus said...

what private citizen did I attack?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Dana Grubb.

Uncle Remus said...

i'll give u that one - I thought u meant on this post