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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Cameras, Fine Dining or Cops?

Earlier today, I introduced you to Allentown Mayoral candidate Tony Phillips' campaign blog, Time4Tony. I even echoed his criticism of surveillance cameras vs. actual boots on the ground. But as Jarrett Renshaw at QCD makes clear, this really is a false choice.
Phillips's argument is flawed, because he creates a false choice between funding for cameras and funding for police officers. It's not an either-or proposition. See, the funding for those cameras came mostly from federal and state dollars and could not be used to hire new police officers.
Jarrett is right. The camera money could not have been used for more police officers. But Tony is really right, too. Those cameras mean very little without an adequate police force. "Cops care. Cameras don't." Pawlowski has ignored Allentown's public safety in favor of developing restaurants. His solution to Allentown crime has been fine dining.

When he ran for mayor the first time, King Edwin published a newsletter that contained a three-pronged solution to crime. First, he'd use Lehigh County deputy sheriffs. Sheriff Rossi was photographed at the podium, standing next to Pawlowski, as he made this promise. Second, he'd use citizen volunteers to help out with paperwork and do things that could free up officers and keep them on the street. Third, he claimed to have knowledge of federal funding sources that would help beef up the police ranks.

In fact, he's done none of these things.

No deputy sheriffs have been used, despite a solemn pledge as Sheriff Rossi piously stood next to him. Strike one.

Federal funding to beef up the police department? In 2006, Allentown's police staffing was at its lowest levels since the 50s, and that's according to Pawlowski's own state of the city address. And wait until this year! Strike two.

Citizen volunteers? He keeps making promises about that, too, and only started doing something last year. Steeerike three.

12 comments:

WouldULikePepperOnThat? said...

Good point Bernie about it not being able to be swapped .. cameras for cops... however... who foots the bill for the $300k after the grant money is used??? if thier isn't another grant for that doesn't it make taking the money pointless in the first place??? just like all the grant money to build more Gov't buildings that now need to be filled with more gov't workers costing more taxpayer dollars for things like electric, phones, gas and pensions outta control. how bout the mayor trying to get a grant that doesn't dig the city a bigger hole than its allready in??? since he likes restaurants so much maybe he should consult Ronald Mcdonald??? at least only one of those has ever gone outta busines.

Anonymous said...

Bernie,

What he did do with “citizen volunteers” was in fact shameful and yet the press reported it as a triumph. He directed a motley crew of well intentioned but none the less challenged individuals to patrol the highest crime area of the downtown as “Guardian Angles”. The woman who “directed” this effort was clearly not up to the task yet Ed used her for his own advantage. Did he learn this tactic at Moody Bible School?
The “Call” of course dutifully reported the story exactly how Ed wanted them to, it is amazing no one was hurt. The patrols lasted only a short time and their demise was not reported by the press.

Scott Armstrong

Bernie O'Hare said...

And so it goes in Little Chicago.

Anonymous said...

so we are forced to chose between a mayor who didn't deliver on his promises and a mayor who doesn't know that he is offering false choices.

ah, the politicians are abound.

still not voting for any of these baffoons.

A.J.C. said...

still not voting for any of these baffoons.

And that makes you better how?

Anonymous said...

If Pawlowski really wants cash he should talk to P2P king jim Hickey. He has helped pawlowski in the past and is the the guy known to 'get' the money for pols he wants to help.

Anonymous said...

Great critique Bernie.

Now WTF is Phillips master plan. Having one and it not working out so well is still a notch above not having one at all.

Anonymous said...

Little Chicago!

Priceless.

Anonymous said...

"And so it goes in little chicago"

This from a guy who can't get respect in a one light town called Nazareth

Anonymous said...

"And that makes you better how?"

I refuse to vote for the lesser of two evils. It neither makes me better or worse. Politicians should earn our votes, not get them b/c they are simply not as bad as the worst.

I'm not the only one feeling this way. Plenty of us are rolling their eyes at these two.

Anonymous said...

The problem lies with our state legislators and the inability to appropriate funds properly. The same explanations were heard when it was argued that Coca Cola Park money should have been used for more police in A-Town - this is money appropriated for brick and mortar projecs (blah,blah,blah)and can't be used for anything else. Perhaps if the state representatives in our area (Jenn Mann) did a better job of arguing for funds for more "boots on the street", and less campaigning for sports stadiums/arenas, then maybe monies would be appropriated differently for programs that are really needed in Allentown.

Anonymous said...

We'll at least king edwin just throws work at his supporters and doesn't waste their time unlike this engineering contract. NC is wasting the time of 2 dozen engineering firms when you were already told that only 3 firms were qualified. I've done work for the county for years when they needed me.