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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Thursday, October 02, 2014

It's Time For Northampton County To Say No To Easton

Below is a resolution that I hope to see adopted this evening.


            WHEREAS, on July 5, 2012, Northampton County Council, at Resolution 57-2012, expressed its opposition to any new commuter tax in Easton; and

WHEREAS, on August 8, 2012, the City of Easton voted to impose a 1.75% earned income tax on nonresidents, with no prior notice to Northampton County; and

WHEREAS, workers in Easton already pay a $52 Local Services Tax to the City of Easton; and

WHEREAS, the implementation of this tax on Northampton County workers has had a deleterious impact on many, who have seen their net income diminish; and

WHEREAS, through a 14-year planned reduction of both resident and non-resident wage taxes in the City of Philadelphia, jobs are increasing at the rate of 2,800 jobs per year; and

WHEREAS,  a recent study prepared by Dr. Robert Inman at The Wharton School reveals that commuter taxes lead to an exit of jobs and businesses; and

WHEREAS, a commuter tax in Scranton was invalidated on September 30, 2014, by the Honorable John Braxton at Lackawanna No. 2014CIV4799; and

WHEREAS, on October 1, 2014, Easton Mayor Sal Panto proposed increasing the commuter tax from 1.75% to 1.95%.


1)  That Northampton County Council condemns Easton’s commuter tax as well as the proposed commuter tax increase as a form of taxation without representation that unfairly targets the workers of Northampton County, our most precious asset; and  

2) That Northampton County Council condemns Easton’s commuter tax as well as the proposed commuter tax increase as contrary to the law as set forth in the Opinion of the  Honorable John Braxton at Lackawanna No. 2014CIV4799; and

3) That Northampton County Executive John Brown is respectfully requested to take all actions to prevent the implementation of the Easton commuter tax, including the suspension of collection and the institution of a declaratory Judgment action.

4) That a copy of this resolution be distributed to Easton Mayor Sal Panto as well as all members of Easton City Council.


Anonymous said...


jurisdictional slap fight.

Anonymous said...

He's like that punk kid in your neighborhood you must always keep an eye on, lest he steal your stuff. Every neighborhood has its hood. He's NorCo's hood.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Time to say No to Sal.

He has messed with the county workforce long enough.

Anonymous said...

Is this a civil liberties question? The fact that out-of-town workers have no vote in choosing these representatives who tax us does seem similar to a king in a foreign land taxing us differently.
Tea Tax and Stamp Act were just some of the taxes imposed on the colonies that didn't apply to those who lived in England.
What's to stop King Panto and his crew from continually raising this commuter tax in order to meet his budget.
He needs to stick to his parking meters. Those we can avoid. People have little choice if they are lucky enough to find a job, but unlucky to have that business located in his kingdom.
Who the fuck came up with this "commuter tax" bullshit to begin with? It seems no matter where you work, the local government tries to squeeze more money out of people who aren't living in their fiefdom.

Anonymous said...

Sal's like a crack addict who's running out of money to steal to pay for his habit. They rip off their own families and then begin ripping off the neighbors to support their habit. His millage is maxed and his fee structure is the highest in the area. His parking revenue topped $750,000 last year and he's implemented larger fines. His commuter tax increase is another desperate grab for his next fix. He's daring AFSCME to complain because the money is purportedly going to AFSCME pensions. He's pushing them as far as possible and betting they'll keep their traps shut. He's probably right.

Anonymous said...

What is the difference between the commuter tax and an occupational privilege tax, which has been assessed by numerous municipalities in the area, and is entirely legal?

Goldsmith R Us said...

Funny? He would cut his nose off to spite his face.

He won't use the electronic media anymore. He can't control it, so instead won't involve himself in meaningful discourse. He swore off this blog, because he was called out to task.

Amazing how the cockroaches run and hide when the lights are shown on them!

You get what you elected. A recycled washed up politician and poorly skilled house "salesman" lackey.

Anonymous said...

Man would I love to see Northampton County move most administrative operations to Forks Township or Bethlehem Township and keep only a courthouse in the County Seat. This happened in Chester County for other reasons, as the county developed an administrative services complex outside West Chester in West Goshen Township since a suitable place in town couldn't be found.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Sal...You saved me more money than you know. Sorry to hurt all the fine businesses in Easton but I will not spend A NICKEL in your city until you repeal this tax. Asshole!

Anonymous said...

You can move the county out of Easton, but you have to take the prison with you. The problem with these county guys is that they are blood suckers. Easton gets stuck with a large tax exempt hole in the city and a prison wwhich detracts from the residential neighborhoods surrounding the prison. Easton has to maintain a police department trained to quell riots and search for escaped prisoners and work release inmates. Thanks county for all that you have done to the city.

Anonymous said...

They could build a new prison at Braden airfield

Bernie O'Hare said...

Quelling riots? Escapes? Actually the NorCo deputies and COs do very well on their own most of the time, though the EPD is always there when needed. It is a great police department.

Here's my take. The County has an obligation to take care of the County, and Easton has an obligation to take care of Easton. Just as Easton should not be forced to subsidize the county, the county should not be forced to subsidize Easton.

Bernie O'Hare said...

"Man would I love to see Northampton County move most administrative operations to Forks Township or Bethlehem Township and keep only a courthouse in the County Seat. "

I have long been a proponent of moving all county operations to Gracedale, where the county has hundreds of acres. Thiusa is the geographic center. But from a transportation viewpoint, Bethlehem Township is the most accessible loacation.

Peter J.Cochran said...

I can't take sides very well here. But if you make $50,000 usd a year you contributed $875.00 or $16.83 toward some combination of EIT where you live and 'commuter tax'where you receive income if in Easton,City. Now, at that rate-assume you live in Palmer Twp. for example and pay 1% there, your new rate would be $9.14 a week OR about $1.93 a week increase.---- I would go to some of these tax free outfits and explain the facts of life. A couple of them want the vegetable gardens but they are STARVING the draft horse that does the plowing by not feeding it.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Peter, the wage tax is simply a bad idea in local government and should be kept low. It cjust chases away jobsm, as Dr. Inman demonstrated pretty conclusively last week during a symposium at Lehigh.

Peter J.Cochran said...

Bernie ,lets see if we move county operations out of Easton ,the city could turn the old buildings into tax payers .We the County taxpayers could shoulder the cost of NEW BUILDINGS at say $190,000,000 for the number of sq. ft. Ask Mr Brown how much that would be in NEW COUNTY COSTS.- And take the welfare office with you to Nazareth.----- Don't like that idea ha?

Peter J.Cochran said...

Yes Bernie I do know -People vote with their feet. the Dr.is right ,especially in manufacturing.

Bernie O'Hare said...

There is no occiupational privilege tax. It's been replaced by the local services tax. It's $52, charged to everyone, everywhere. It is not a wage tax and is more of as nuisance tax, not enough to drive jobs away. Easton has both.

Anonymous said...

Why not annex Forks & Palmer Twps? Consolidate government operations and there's your needed dollars.

Annex Wilson ind it's school district, adjust some boundaries, consolidate operations and plenty of dollars for years out.

Anonymous said...

Who's Dr. Inman?


Any decision maker in Northampton County

Dice Mittman said...

Note to King Sal:

Mary, Mary, quite contrary--looks like your tax is dead and history....OHHHHHH!!!!

Peter J.Cochran said...

Dear Dice ; not so , does it not appear the the judge 's rule was that Scranton can't charge a different percentage in non-residents working in Scranton ? I don't think he ruled Scranton can't charge commuter taxes.Please correct me as I'm usually WRONG APPARENTLY!

Peter J.Cochran said...

Bernie in Easton WE if registered as residents ---- Pay EIT& Emergency Services Tax and percap tax also , yes a pain to keep track of ,But if you don't pay then they don't know your here..So with my County tax's and my Easton building tax and the State taxes everybody gets a bit of my ass -one chunk at a time .Still cheaper than Morris County New jersey!!!

Anonymous said...


So sad about your buddy, Father Alex. I knew he was mental sick, but I didn't know that he was physically sick too. Are you goinhg to do a piece on his life tomorrow. I can't wait to eat at his meal of mercy next week!

I hope he atoned for all of his kiddie sins before he bit the big one.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Members of the Easton Lebanese community and other friends of Father Alex, The above defamation was posted by the Blog Mentor, who likes to tell lies. He was doing that on WAEB until the Sprague law firm threatened the station with a defamation suit, which I hope is filed. Though this comment is anonymous, it is like other equally defamatory comments he has posted under his real name on his hate-filled blog. This guy even threatened to disrupt Fr. Alex' ordination ceremony. I have told Fr. Alex many times that he needs to sue. He declines bc he is a man of peace. His treatment of Fr. Alex borders on religious persecution.If you would like more information about the Blog Mentor and wish to take legal action to stop his lies, email me at BOHare5948@aol.com

Anonymous said...

Funny thing. The Blog Mentor doesn't even have a blog. The one where all of his garbage is strewn is his wife's blog.