Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Comment: Anybody But Fleck (ABF) for Easton Mayor

I've invited you, the reader, to make your own endorsements in the upcoming primary. I've received this anonymous comment:

To me it looks like the people in Easton have a choice. Vote for ABF (Anyone But Fleck) and be the gateway to Pennsylvania. Vote in Fleck and I guess that makes the city Pennsylvania's asshole!!


Anonymous said...

very interesting and totally accurate. Fleck has shown his true love of the city by posting his signs everywhere --- that is of course except for on private lawns. That to me says a lot -- people know him in Easton and anyone who knows him or of him will not vote for him. He is not even in the same class as Panto.

Anonymous said...

Will Fleck come tonight andface the music? That will say a lot to me.

eastonpride said...

Anon you are being too kind to Fleck. The kid needs a lot of work - a real job would be a nice start. All of his shortcomings aside, he has no management experience let alone executive management experience. Easton needs an experienced leader especially at this time in our history and in my mind of the three candidates running (sorry Billy) the only person that can hit the ground running with what I feel is a very good platform is Panto.

Anonymous said...


Sal Panto and his family and I have been friends for 20 years, but Sal as Gary Strausser's head of development converted the Binney & Smith Black Mill on Bushkill Drive to apartments that flood.

Strausser and Panto also plan to development other former Binney & Smith propoerties located on Palmer Township's Edgewood Drive in the Bushkill Creek floodplain.

The Black Mill apartments project encroaches on a pristine portion of Bushkill Creek that is a "no kill" trout stream.

Finally, Sal has yet to abjure Riverwalk.

Anonymous said...

Billy Billy Billy, please get your facts straight or silence yourself. The mill you peak of was a great adaptive reuse of an existing historic structure which the developer painstakingly restored into beautiful apartments at a significant cost. He also restored the water tower which has no significance at all except that "it was always there and should be preserved." I was oneof the first tenants in that building and now own my own home. I lived through the first flood and loveed living on the beautiful creek. The building was built to total specs for a floodplain - no utilities or living spaces on the first level - everything ABOVE the flood plain. I also lived through the second flood and it was Panto that put into effect a flood evacuation plan that is working very well. Also, I used to see him here personally through the night checking on the situation in case the building should be evacuated.
Billy, stick to the facts that you know and stop making things up about a guy that has the smarts, experience and desire to help Easton.
As for the no kill creek - it is still a no kill area, Strausser allows fisherman to park and fish in the release area of the creek and has done some environmentally positive things to keep the creek a high quality creek.
One final note -- read the paper it was the Easton School District that purchased the upper mills you clain Strausser was going to restore. The facts Billy.

Anonymous said...

I live on SouthSide and I have a Fleck sign in my lawn and so do my neighbors. There are many of us in Easton who think it is time for a change. No more more of the same people who have made us the asshole of PA.

Anonymous said...

I just got a phone call from a friend about your blog. You are all crazy. Fleck do more while on council then any of the Mayors we have had for the last twenty years.He has experience and he is a great person who listens to our concerns and addresses them in city hall.

Anonymous said...

I work for Mike. I was also called about the site. He works hard running the Irregular, which he owns and operates. He has six people working for him and the paper is more organized and well run then it has ever been. What is a real job pride? What do you do? Mike's paper is for the community and helps the community as well as being a passion and a "real job"

Anonymous said...

Running the Irregular and running a city, there's a scary comparison. That's like licensing a plunber because he can flush a toilet.

J. SPIKE ROGAN said...


I just want to say first off. Yes I do work on Flecks campaign. (Perhaps thats why my blog link is MIA from here, although I would hope it is the lack of posts since New Years.)

Just remeber we have looked like the anuses of the Valley since 2003 its called MITMAN!

Since 2003 we have had the Cuvo case, Jesse Sollman's death. The $5,000 city payout for Sollmans funeral. (That was a bargin in reality at under 20 grand! BUT the city felt the family should get stuck with most of the bill!)

And well I do recall back in the day When Mitman trashed the city the first time he left after a term and umm well some former teacher named Panto took over. (Whom got alot of support from his long time Italian neighbors and former pupils.)

1 Many of Sal's old supporters live in Forks, Palmer, Williams and elsewhere. (The cities demograpics are drasticly diffrent from the days of "Heavyweight Champion Larry holmes"!)

Many Democrats support Sal untill they hear him speak the issues and see Sal is a D.I.N.O. (Democrat in Name Only.) Sal supported busting up the union jobs at the water plant in favor of Mitman's GOP Privitize everything under the sun plan.

And as for all this Belly Aching about signs everywhere. Many were put up by Flecks supporters and not the campaign. (ie downtown)

And well why is Roger Ruggles and Gary Bertsch getting free passes? Those two Republicans (In a VERY blue city!) have yard signs everywhere as well. The ONLY houses that have Bertsch signs if you notice all all "For Sale" overwhelingly. (Many are houses owned by Gary since he is a landlord)

And as for the signs everywhere BUT lawns. Mine keep getting stolen from my lawn. (As are the ones by route 78, next to that church property that has the giant wood Panto sign again further blurring the lines between church and state kinda like the GOP and Neo-Clowns did during the 2004 election.) Maybe if some supporters of the former mayor (whom by the way lost to Goldsmith in 1991!) would look at it, is giant wood signs anybetter?

I guess Panto has a BIGGER is better vision of the world. Some may call it TEXAS style, and well how did that work out at PA AVE????

Anonymous said...

I am not in favor of all these disparaging remarks about Mike Fleck. He has been a committed citizen for several years, and warrants a bit better than we are reading on here. That being said, there is no way that I believe he is qualified to Mayor. I do not think he has the work experience to be effective Mayor. The last writer touted his work at the Irregular (as owner and manager)...but states that Mike is responsible for the 6 employees there, hardly comparable to the hundreds employed by the city. Plus, he has not been running the Irregular that long, has he? Fleck...nice guy, but not Mayor material.

Anonymous said...

J. Spike, you make it seem like it is a bad thing that Sal had support of "his long time Italian neighbors "...why is that? Why could you not have said that he had support of his long time neighbors? Being an American-Italian, I am offended by your reference. I hope your attitude is not shared by others in the Fleck campaign.

On another note, and I may be incorrect about this, I do not believe the property near Rt 78 is owned by any church. If I am wrong, I hope someone can correct me...but think it is owned by a separate group, not the church.

Anonymous said...

Can anyone tell me what Fleck's consulting company does? I've tried to find information about it, but there isn't even a website.

J. SPIKE ROGAN said...

Well I'm irish I don't get offended by Ted Kennedy's "Irish" support. Lets get real the South side was the Itialian community of easton and MANY who lived there 20 years ago are .... NOT there.

Thats a clear fact!

Anonymous said...

Anon. 12:45 PM,

If elected, Sal would keep Bill Murphy as Easton's solicitor, and probably Joel Scheer as well.

Murphy has misled city council on Riverwalk.

Murphy is also a member of the law firm that helped railroad Plainfield octogenarian Anna Mae Kessler into the Williams Manor assisted-living facility at 164 Baron Road, bushkill Township.

As for Scheer, Easton's planning department under the direction of blue-blood Barb Kowitz of the silk-stocking College Hill neighborhood showered her fellow Brahman with special favors.

Blue-Blood Barb and her department let Scheer build the architectural intrusion at 179 Pennsylvania Avenue on a steep slope that storm-water runoff eroded onto Lower Shawnee Drive below.

Easton's leaders and various agencies and authorities have also allowed Lafayette College to develop in the Delaware River and Bushkill Creek floodplain and failed to collect a PILOT (Payment In-Lieu Of Taxes)from Lafayette.

J. SPIKE ROGAN said...

WOW Billy on subject and rather accurate. lol

Also keep in mind Stu Gallher would still be in city hall with Panto. Gallher has been there for Mitman (twice) Panto, and Goldsmith. Ever wonder why easton has been in so much since the first mitman term. Look no further than the Dick Chaney of Easton politics (with a flare of some Kissinger as well) Stu Gallher.

Bernie O'Hare said...

J. Spike,

Your blog link was deleted a few days ago because it is inactive. You haven't posted for some time. I removed a few links to inactive blogs. No dark mystery there, buddy. I had no idea whether you were backing Fleck, and that really doesn't matter to me. Start posting again and I'll restore it. But posting once every six months does not make you a blogger.

I don't live in Easton and won't be voting in that race. But Fleck was properly tagged last time he ran for embellishing his collegiate and work record. He finished third of four candidates - in the primary.

Now he's running again and thinks we can all forget about that first campaign. Maybe we can. But that's hard to do when Lehigh County Dems come on here and claim he was trying to fleece other candidates there as a "consultant." And the facts bear them out. Campaign finance records reveal Fleck was paid $20,000 by the Follweiler campaign in just eleven weeks. Something is wrong with that. In addition to that, we have stories about similar efforts in other campaigns. And a former Follweiler campaign worker will be featured on this blog tomorrow.

On top of this shady record as a consultant, i remember very clearly that Fleck suddenly decided to support a KOZ for the Cinema Paradiso right around the time he got some dough from developer Abe Atiyeh. Coincidence? Please. That's not my idea of good government. And by the way, the Cinema Paradiso went down the tubes, even with the KOZ break.

On top of all this, I'm hearing all sorts of things that I'm trying to confirm before I publish. Do you know someone named Juan who worked with Fleck before? If so, do you know his surname and where I can reach him? He has a very interesting story, and I'm trying to track it down.

The comment posted here was not my comment. If you'd care to submit a post explaining why Fleck is the best candidate for mayor, I'll post that. I've made that offer. But I find I'm being persuaded that Fleck is a lightweight who can't be trusted as Easton's mayor.

Anonymous said...

Just to correct some info...the Mayor has no control or authority over the solicitors at this time. Goldsmith actually sued Council for control of hiring/firing solicitors, but lost. Council is only body that can retain/hire/let go solicitors.

Bernie O'Hare said...


Fleck was a political consultant and worked a few Lehigh County campaigns. He did not make many friends there, at least not many Democratic friends.

Anonymous said...


Strausser's and Panto's worst project by far is there development on Frost Hollow Road in Forks Township.

As that development grows, North Delaware drive (State Route 611) will turn into State Route 209 in Smithfield Township, in the Poconos in Monroe County.

And the toll bridge (and free bridge, as well) and the State Routes 22, 611, 248, and 115 will turn into the DRJTBC toll bridge on I-80 connecting Knowlton Township, NJ, and Marshall's Creek, PA.

Just as with the Government Center Expansion in the predominantly African-American and Hispanic Dutchtown-Gallows Hill neighborhood, Northampton County's seat, Easton, has no rational planning in place.

Anonymous said...

My long-standing friend Sal Panto has also been wounded by his wife, Pam, also my friend, by her unyielding support of Riverwalk - as have her council colleagues Kenneth Brown and Sandy "Ms. Cabbage Patch Doll" Vulcano.

At Easton's last controversial development, the Social Security Building on S. 4th St.. and the current Riverwalk fiasco, Ms. Cabbage Patch Doll has said, "Easton needs development. Just give us development, any kind of development, just as long as it's development that puts 'feet on the street' in Downtown Easton."

Anonymous said...


I didn't mean to slight Easton Councilman Dan Corpora. When it's his day in the barrell for re-election, teamed up with Ms. Cabbage Patch Doll, these two political runts will also pay the price for their support of Riverwalk.

Anonymous said...

the parcel of land near I-78 IS NOT owned by a church - it is owned by a society that the Panto family belongs to and has since it was founded more than 90 years ago. That being said The Spike doesn't know his Italian community too well. The Italians are the most divided ethnic community in the city when it comes to supporting another Italian American. I know this for a fact. HOWEVER, having said that, this time around Panto does have more Italian support and that's because he is a better person, a better candidate and for sure a better leader with the hands on experience that Easton needs. And pooolllease do not compare him to Mitman. I know Phil and he is no Sal.

Chris Casey said...

I love reading these comments, it reinforces my belief that everybody is crazy!

LVDem said...

insanity is not a charactoristic unique to Upper/Lower macungie. We're all off our rocker. Actually, I flat out broke mine last week.

Anonymous said...

First Anon. at 5:13 PM and then chris casey and Lvdem:

Proof that Easton's large Italian community does not necessarily constitute a voting bloc lies in this fact:

In the 1991 mayoral election, ormer Easton treasurer and later controller Pat Vulcano Jr. supported the Republican challenger over incumbent Democratic Mayor, handing Tom Goldsmith the victory betraying Pat's pal since childhood, Sal Panto.

Proof in the pudding of Easton's insanity is its persistance in allowing wealthy and poltically connected developers like Lafayette College, Arcadia Properties, Koehler and Kheel Realtors, and others to build in the Delaware and Lehigh rivers and Bushkill Creek floodplains - and, to boot, giving them the incentive of LERTA, KOZ, and TIF property-tax exemptions to build there.

Easton compounds these floodplain violations by allowing these well-heeled developers to build on the steep slopes that hover above.

Up and down these brown slopes, dabbed with green or other colors where trees and other foliage remain, the yellow Caterpillar earth-movers crawl, without cessation it seems, and, like monstrous tumbleturds rolling ahead of themselves balls of dung, push their cargo, trees and all, into the streams below.

This endless process silts the streams, making them shallower, thus warmer and less habitable for cold-water-loving trout, and more susceptible to warm-water-loving algae and other aquatic, parasitical, vegetative life forms.

The silting of their beds for a certainty makes the streams more susceptible to flooding.

Anonymous said...

Billy, you're having a good (well, better) week so far. This is one week that I haven't had to replace the scroll-wheel on my mouse.

See, isn't it fun being part of the discussion at hand?

Anonymous said...


1) I think it's disgusting to slander any candidate because of their ethnic heritage. That just shows that the accuser is racist;

2) ABF is the only thing that will save Easton from becomming "one of those places" that we don't want to go to or be any part of; and

3) Anyone who votes for Fleck should have their head examined, because he is really and truly an idiot.

Bernie Takes No Prisoners

Anonymous said...

Spike...did you look at the voting results of the charter study commission? Panto beat Fleck pretty badly. With the exception of Freeman, Panto was the top vote getter.
Billy...I see Vulcano has a large Panto sign in his yard.

Anonymous said...

corpora's getting his day - he's running for magisterial district judge to avoid running for re-election to city counceil

but hey, he didn't even take the minimally required minor judiciary course for mdj

talk about dedication and commitment

Anonymous said...

I just came across this blog, so forgive me if I sound not quite 'in the party' (double entendre intentional). Fleck is clearly a liar in many (proven)respects, and Panto is another retread candidate whose minimal accomplishments, or lack thereof, in the past are well known.

I suggest any readers who have a sincere, nonpartisan, interest in the future of Easton sit down with Gary Bertsch for 5 minutes. He is honest, has integrity, and is driven, not by ego, but for his love of the City. Ask anyone who he has helped in the West Ward.

I know the primary is coming up, but talk to the man before committing to the general election candidate out of reflex or habit.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Anon, You are right. There is another candidate out there. And he deserves serious consideration, as does Sal. But does Fleck? That's the question here.

Anonymous said...

Go to Eastonundressed. They have interviews with all the Mayoral candidates.

Gary admits he wishes he knew about city finances.

But he is republican what do they know about balanced budegts?

Bernie O'Hare said...


The probnlem I have at EU is I can never get those damn audios to download. I've tried. I'll try again. I also have a bit more respect for the written word. EU has become a blog with practically no blogs. I like essays. But maybe it's time for me to upgrade.

I would not trash the R for being honest. Municipal finances are a complicated mess. Historically, Republicans do a better job with finances than us. Bush is an exception to that rule.

House of Crayons said...

Our blog is different. We like the documents over opinion approach. Recordings are very good documents. Our intent has never been to be an op-ed. EU is an interactive community advocacy site that is anchored on a weblog.

We do value op-eds, but keeping pace with meetings and press conferences is sometimes a huge effort.

We will find our balance (hopefully soon).

And bernie,
I moved the comments link to the top of the posts on EU. You always drop your comments to the previous post. I just like it better at the top.

Bernie O'Hare said...


I think I understand the approach, but it's different than your first year, when there were a lot more essays. I'm not really knocking it. We all have different approaches and styles. And I can'rt dl the audio on my dinosaur at home. I have to use one of the fancy cables modems at an Easton office, dl the audio and then send it home via email.

I have only been able to listen to the first few Fleck minutes thus far. I will listen to his entire interview.

Anonymous said...

I am glad the voters once again rejected Mike Fleck in the primary. Hopefully it will happen the next time he runs and the next time after that.