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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Thursday, April 08, 2010

A-Town: What We've Got Here is a Failure to Communicate

During last night's Allentown City Council meeting, the importance of good communication became the theme. Here are just some of the areas where the City needs to improve:

* Landlords and tenants had no idea that landlord licensing fees would skyrocket this year;

* Allentown last year actually published the wrong Cedar Creek Park plans, and the administration classified revised plans as top secret while claiming everyone was misinformed;

* King Edwin routinely hides city finances from Council, leading to wild speculation that the city is filing for bankruptcy or Act 47 relief;

* The Morning Call's Jarret Renshaw will soon be awarded a law degree for all the Right to Know claims he is winning;

* King Edwin may peep into the Council meeting room, but avoids actual meetings unless Council threatens to send a constable.

In an effort to avoid all the miscommunication that's become all too commonplace, Council VP Michael Donovan proposed an amendment to a resolution approving the city's latest park plans, requiring that major changes be approved first. But other council members soon began tinkering with it, and that lasted a good 90 minutes. Frankly, I have no idea what the hell they finally decided. At one point, they were thinking about requiring $100,000 changes to be approved, then it was $40,000, then it was just a recommendation.

Last night, thirty-one citizens cared enough about their City to come to a meeting, but the Mayor himself was MIA. If you want to know why there's such a communication problem in the Queen City, just look at Pawlowski's empty chair.

10 AM Update: More detailed coverage of last night's meeting can be found in The Morning Call, Remember and Molovisnky.


Michael Donovan said...

Sorry. Thank goodness Mr. Schweyer found common ground. I admire him for his ability to do that.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Don't be sorry. You made your point very well.

Anonymous said...

We've been told the mayor generally does not attend council meetings. Thanks for this eye-witness report, Bernie.

Anonymous said...

* Landlords and tenants had no idea that landlord licensing fees would skyrocket this year"

If the inspection fee per unit is $75.00, for a senior high rise that could add up to more than a $50,000 fee.

Anonymous said...

Here's something that seems horribly unfair. Allentown just hired a new Economic Development Director. This individual has relocated to take this job. What happens to her job, if the city goes bankrupt?

Anonymous said...

That person must have really needed a job. Not much different than the guy who takes the Oakland Raiders head coaching gig. She has a better chance of seeing God than succeeding there.

Pawlowski's a bum. Glad I don't live there anymore.

Bernie O'Hare said...

This council is a pathetic joke. Over the years real damage has been done to the city and its residents through similar incompetence and fecklessness.

Scott Armstrong

Bernie O'Hare said...

The above comment is from Scott. For some reason, it would not go up when he tried to post it this morning, so I oosted his comment for him.

Anonymous said...

"If the inspection fee per unit is $75.00, for a senior high rise that could add up to more than a $50,000 fee."

Haha, how misinformed people are. Please name one Allentown building, or even complex, that has over 660 units! This will cost no one anything close to $50,000.

Anonymous said...

Act 47 is not a question of if, but when for the City.

Scranton, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh, Reading, Allentown...

The only way these cities ever right the ship is for the courts to essentially Chapter 7 them, by make all the existing union contracts null and void, and reorganizing or canceling the debt.

It's not PA either. It's systemic throughout the country.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Readers, this is really weird, but based on some accusations at our local hate blog, I thought I should clarify some things.

1) Scott Armstrong is a regular commenter here. Althugh he and I frequently disagree, I admire and respect him, and his perspective is always interesting.

2) Over the past few days, Scott has experienced some difficulty posting here. He will post a comment, and there is a delay between his comment and the actual posting, or the comment does not appear at all.

3) A few days ago, he sent me an email asking me to post a comment here that he thought never posted. When I went to my blog, the comment was there.

4) When I got up this morning, there was another email from Scott, telling me he had tried to post at 6 AM, but that his comment failed again. he asked me to post his comment for him. I asked him to send me an email if his comment does not post because I am interested in what others have to say.

5) I posted his comment for him at 9:38 AM, under my own name. I thought it would be obvious to anyone reading the blog that the comment was made by Scott, and I was merely acting as his conduit.

6) Later in the day, a reader emailed me to tell me he was confused about a Scott Armstrong comment going up under my name.

7) I then posted another comment, explaining what had happened.

8) A few minutes ago, I noticed that crazy Villa has posted 14 comments on his blog about this, claiming that this constitues indisputable proof that:

(1) I am impersonating Scott Armstrong;

(2) Armstrong has given me a blanket pre-approval to impersonate him;

(3) Scott is pre-authorized to impersonate me;

(4) This is somehow a smoking gun;

(5) the MC tipped me off to put up a clarifying comment, etc., etc.

That guy is one sick puppy. The truth is that what happened is what I said happened. Scott Armstrong has never imersonated me, and I have never impersonated him.

The fact that Villa spent over 7 hours obsessing about this just demonstrates his mental instability.

Anonymous said...


Congress Apartments-over 500 units.

Scott Armstrong

Anonymous said...

So you are impersonating Scott Armstrong, right?

Bernie O'Hare said...

Yeah, and you're impersonating a human being, right?

Anonymous said...

Looks like Scott Armstrong's "posting difficulties" have been fixed.