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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Pay-to-Play Reform Passes in Allentown

Allentown City Council member Jeanette Eichenwald, LC Comm'r Vic Mazziotti and good government champions Robert Trotner and Lou Shupe deserve a great deal of credit for their efforts over the past several months to ensure that Allentown adopts a pay-to-play bill that will bar anyone who gives more than $250 to a city politician from doing no-bid business with the City. It's proof that a few people can make a difference. Perhaps there is hope for Allentown after all. Of course, there are creative ways to avoid this law, but it sends a clear message that people in government should shy away from major contributions like the kind that Willie Reynolds and Mike Recchiuti received in Bethlehem from the Martin Tower developers. Since the bill passed 5-0, with two absences, it is veto proof.

In the meantime, a federal investigation into the pay-to-play practices in Reading and Allentown is going strong. Rumors are swirling of new charges to be filed in a matter of days.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's going to be up to we Allentonians to guide the City forward because we are truly on our own....



- Alfonso Todd

Anonymous said...

Except it violates free speech, see Citizens United

Bernie O'Hare said...

You should actually read the decision because you are dead wrong.

Anonymous said...

SCOTUS Excerpt in Citizens United:

"The majority argued that the First Amendment protects associations of individuals in addition to individual speakers, and further that the First Amendment does not allow prohibitions of speech based on the identity of the speaker. Corporations, as associations of individuals, therefore have speech rights under the First Amendment. Because spending money is essential to disseminating speech, as established in Buckley v. Valeo, limiting a corporation's ability to spend money is unconstitutional because it limits the ability of its members to associate effectively and to speak on political issues."

Bernie O'Hare said...

And this has nothing to do with limits, which the Sipreme Court rxpressly found legal. You are either stupid or dishonest or most likely, both.

Robert Trotner said...

You can contribute as much as you want but then you're not eligible for no bid contracts.

Campaign limits as they have in Philadelphia, Reading, Tallahassee, suburban Chicago, Peinceton, abd soon to be other cities is coming to Allentown. Sue if you want but you'll lose. This has already been approved by both the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, the Third Corcuit, and every other state court where campaign finance limits exist today.

Rich Fegley said...

In case anyone missed tonight's meeting...video online

Allentown City Council on 2015-10-07

Bernie O'Hare said...

Thanks Rich. It looked to me like a lively night.

Anonymous said...

Have to wonder how many no-bid contracts were awarded so far since the NIZ started dispensing taxpayer money. I'll never forget an early Traub statement that went something like this "Butz was selected because there was no other firm within 100 miles who can handle a project like this." Really?

Fred Windish

Anonymous said...

Butz is special to the Mayor.

Anonymous said...

The owner of this blog was either:



1. A head banger as a kid or



2. Dropped on head as a kid



He suffered some type of complete mental breakdown many years ago, and instead of climbing out of that hole he put himself in, he has done nothing but wake and sleep, each day with hatred and contempt grinding at the stem of his rotted out and alcohol fried brain. Its is not, nor has ever been his goal to rise above his disgrace and many misdeeds, but only to be a downward winding ball of emulsified cow shit, who hits rock bottom, then burrows into the ground, hitting one new low, after another and another.



He goes off half cocked each day (and boy is that generous) provoking people in jail, bashing women in an uncontrolled and obsessive "marytr/victim" style with no end in sight, and always poisoning the good names of many, many people. He cannot get along with anyone, because he does not get along with himself. 



And what type of small and feeble person finds so much offense in the right to free speech? A coward with a keyboard, and too much time on his hands. Get a life!

Lou Shupe said...

I recorded and posted last night's Allentown city council meeting to http://www.ustream.tv/channel/lehigh-valley-caffeinated with no username or password required. Look a little further and you should find a 3 part interview with James Ochse, otherwise known as Allentown's resident singer.

Anonymous said...

Did the ordinace require sole source justification? A street lighting bid requirement could specify a particular standard or fixture. That does not provide a bidder edge unless one contractor has exclusivity to that product.

Chris said...

Need to clarify something from last night. When Don Ringer told Joe Davis that Davis had received $15k from Citizens for a Better Allentown (the Mayor's PAC), Davis protested, pointed his finger at Ringer, and said "you better know what you're talking about if you're going to accuse somebody of something." Davis then said the amount he received was $15,000 - his own contributions to the PAC. No one asked him how much those were.

This link shows a donation from the PAC to Mr. Davis for $15,126.83. It also shows an expense back to the PAC for "mailings and literature" in the amount of $1000. That's not really a contribution of $1000 but a payment, I would think. Going by this document, which is dated June 2015 (right before the raid and the disbanding of the PAC), it would seem then that the PAC gave Mr. Davis $14,126.83. If Mr. Davis made no other contributions (or payments) to the PAC besides what's reported in June, then Mr. Ringer was wrong on the hard facts but not in spirit. There's a difference between $15,000 and $14,126.83, certainly. But.

http://www.allentownpa.gov/Portals/0/files/CityCouncil/Joseph%20Davis%20-%20Campaign%20Finance%20Statement%20and%20Report%20June%202015.pdf

Anonymous said...

Mr. Davis is pure as the driven snow.
You can take that to the bank.

Anonymous said...

Yea, he is also part of the hamilton hanna handjobs herion hookups hotspot circlejerk soul sales sectors subdivisional tools too¿!($ He and other circus tools have been employeed for the circus shell trix trusts and stipends set away for yet allready manipulated and misappropreated from allentowns innocent indigent childrens children not even in incubation period¿!($

Just waiting for the filming of the perp walks covered nationally because local media suffers inclusion too, hence edited out news worthy weekend upon us¿!($

redd
patent pending

Anonymous said...

anon 6:53, now that is funny!

Rich Fegley said...

If Hillary Clinton had reason to give back Ed Pawlowski's $1,000 donation, I feel that all Allentown Candidates should give back the money they received from the PAC that was backed by Ed Pawlowski. Pawlowski's image was on all of the mailers that went out to voters. City Council, School Board and City Controller.

This is basic corruption of our government in Allentown. This is one reason why the FBI knew that there was something bad going on in Allentown.

Give the Pawlowski PAC money back. Citizens for a Better Allentown was Ed Pawlowski and Friends. I told Davis and Glazier that they should make a public statement and give their money back to Pawlowski.

Hillary gave Pawlowski's $1,000 back. Why did she care enough to do that?

Anonymous said...

Sleepy Jeff was in tip top form.
It's a damn shame the esteemed Cynthia Mota
could not make it.
She's always a breath of fresh air.

Anonymous said...

Not for her chair though, even since the waterwar LIEposuction deal vote cast while under heavey sidation and not even on American soil¿!($ The dirt is in the tale put to print¿!($
redd
patent pending

Anonymous said...

I applaud this but what prevents one from giving to a PAC and asking that it be used for a specific political candidate. There will be no paper trail showing direct candidate support, but I guarantee the parties will know where the money comes from. Heck, I can give to one candidate, and he can help fund another, no PAC needed.

Bernie O'Hare said...

From the onset, It has been recognized that there are a million ways around this. Tge point is to send a message

Anonymous said...

what is a toothless message other than a feel good provision? Pass it yes, but recognise, its garbage! All contracts should be based on fully vetted merrit, otherwise even the prohibitions are worthless

Anonymous said...

This ordinance and all of the hoopla around it is a waste of time. There are no provisions for enforcement or penalties. It is so easy to subvert in its current form. This was another of Councilwoman Eichenwald's grandstands, an incomplete ordinance that will accomplish nothing.