I don't know about you, but I find it insulting that the Bi-County Health Bureau would present its budget to the bluebloods at the secretive LVP before letting the rest of us in. That says something about their real Overlords, and it's not us.
Will it pass?
Doubtful. On Northampton County Council, I can only see Peg Ferraro and Mike Dowd supporting it. In Lehigh County, it's a different story. Only Dean Browning, Glenn Eckhart and Tom Creighton are definite Nos. Unless it passes in both counties, it's dead.
Browning is taking it on the chin for supporting some modest salary increases to row officers. But on a big ticket item like this, conservative Andy Roman is a big cheerleader. He actually thinks a Bi-County Health Bureau will help us if we are hit with a "dirty bomb" or bio-terrorism. I admire his independence and passion, but he is confusing a public health department with emergency management.
After the bi-county health department dies, he might want to look into the emergency management coordinated between Lehigh and Northampton County. Not long ago, Lehigh County members saved lives in Northampton County with their quick reaction to a chemical truck spill on Route 33.
Update (10:00 AM): I have the hard numbers, and they call for each County to kick in $250,000 next year, follwed by another $500,000 in Year 2, and $550,000 in Years 3, 4 & 5. This is backed up by a report in The Morning Call.