Tuesday, June 13, 2006

The Christmas City Has More Brownfields Than You Think

Bethlehem's former steel property, 1600 acres located along its south side, has been called the largest privately owned brownfield in the US. Well, Bethlehem has a few more brownfields that no one seems to know about. And if you live there, you could be sitting right on top of one.

I'm talking real brownfield, baby, not that industrial crap. You see, so long as a sewer lateral goes down your street, you're paying a sewer bill. It doesn't matter whether you're hooked. Over the years, the Christmas City has more or less lost track of who's connected and who isn't. Since nearly everyone pays a sewer bill, most with septic systems just assume they have sewer. They discover the truth when ancient septic systems explode, spewing forth sludge from Count Zinzendorf ten times worse than what those damn Canada geese do at Sand Island.

Ho Ho Ho.

Then, in addition to cleaning out historical crap from all those love feasts, property owners must pay the city for a sewer connection, and that ain't cheap.

Ho Ho Ho.

Most of these properties are on the city's south side, near Fountain Hill. Bethlehem officials will gladly perform a dye test, free of charge, to Christmas City residents worried about that smelly brown mud in their back yards. Don't wait 'till July. And PLEASE, do it before Musikfest.

Ho Ho Ho.


Anonymous said...


Brownsite remediations are governed by the federal Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability statute, not by some smoke-filled, back-room deal conjured up by former PA Govenor Tom Ridge and former Environmental Protection Agency Secretary Chrisie Whitman. who quit the post when even she could no longer stomach the directives of her boss President George W. Bush.

As NJ Governor, Christie torpedoed the 43-acre Phillispburg site the state bought for a Railroad and Transportation Museum, then sold for a dollar to the City of P'burg, which in turn handed the site over to P'burg native, developer, and BethWorks Now partner Michael Perrucci.

Lehigh Valley Rendell said...

Hi Bernie and all...I just wanted to promote a new blog that I just started...lehighvalleyrendell.blogspot.com. We'll have info on our campaign, etc. Please check it out and feel free to comment...I hope to have it updated on a daily basis.


Bernie O'Hare said...

Billy, Thanks for your comments. Anyone interested in Billy's colorful perspective on our local and state government should check out Bill's blog, BillyBytes. A link to this powerful writer is located on my blogroll.

Bernie O'Hare said...

To LV Rendell, Is Ed moving here? I looked at your blog and you won't even be making most of the posts. Look, you have my vote. I'd be nuts to vote for Swann. But don't lose it w/ propoganda sites that pretend they're local but are really nothing more than a spin factory coming from Harrisburg.

Anonymous said...


I'll give you 100-1 odds and bet $100 that Billy doesn't get over 1% AND the 133rd stays Democratic.

And, despite what you say with such humility, you DID bait Lamont and he swallowed it hook, line, and sinker!!

Your Biggest Fan.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Well, there you go again. You know I'm an alkie. And according to some other anonymous posters to this blog, I have trouble keeping my pants on. Now your'e tempting me to gamble. Tempt me not, Satan.

All kidding aside, Billy will not even got on the ballot. He knows that himself. But love him or hate him, he's got style.

I just hope Lamont McClure learns a lot more about the importance of open government. As the MC noted in an editorial yesterday, he has a way to go. If he errs, it should be on the side of open government.

I hope and pray you're right about the 133rd. Brennan is a both a likable candidate and is actually a voice of reform. I have nothing against Dawn Berrigan, but think Joe is far more experienced and will be able to accomplish much more.