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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Nolan Takes Reins in Bethlehem Township

Pat Breslin takes oath as Commissioner
Pat Breslin was sworn in as Commissioner during the January 6 reorganization meeting of Bethlehem Township Commissioners. Breslin defeated fellow Republican Paul Weiss, an incumbent, during the Spring primary. Weiss went on to wage a write-in campaign in November, but was 18 votes shy.

A motivational speaker, Breslin had no remarks after taking the oath, which was administered by Magisterial District Judge Joseph Barner.

Incumbent Commissioner Michael Hudak, who defeated Mickey Thompson in November, was also sworn into office by Judge Barner.

Thomas J. Nolan, who has been a part of Bethlehem Township government for more than 30 years, was elected President of the Board of Commissioners in a 3-2 vote. Nolan voted for himself, and was joined by Michael Hudak and Phil Barnard.

Marty Zawarski, who lost the presidency to Nolan, was elected Vice President in another 3-2 vote over Hudak. Zawarski voted for himself, and was joined by Barnard and Breslin.

Commissioners also unanimously agreed to appoint Melissa Shafer as their new Township Manager, effective March 10. Shafer succeeds Howard Kutzler, who resigned late last year to become South Whitehall Township's Director of Administration.

Shafer, who has a Master's Degree in Public Administration, is currently Chalfont's Borough Manager. In 2009, Shafer had urged that Borough to stop taping their meetings to avoid making tapes available under the state's Right-to-Know law, according to a Morning Call account. But a review of recent minutes reveals that the meetings are still being taped.


Anonymous said...

She looks hot so guess I'll start attending their meetings.

Anonymous said...

There was a larger than usual crowd there, especially for a re-org meeting. Surprised the money man wasn't there.

I also saw in the MCall account: "Zawarski, 57, has been a commissioner for two years. He did not want to be specific on what issues he hopes to address in the coming year, but said, "There are a number of things and they will be brought up in the future.''"

Some were appointed and reappointed despite rumors of being on the wrong side of the money man.

I couldn't help but wonder if some real desires were muted with so many eyes watching. What things "will be brought up in the future" when only the usual handful are there? or more behind the scenes with the new manager who'll want to keep her at-will job?

However,I never like to assume, good or bad, so it should be interesting to simply watch how the dynamics of this board evolve this year. Sometimes people campaign saying one thing, but when "the election's over" have other agendas. Time will tell I suppose. Here's hoping for a transparent, thoughtful, cooperative, year for Bethlehem Township.

Anonymous said...

Overheard Hudak, Weiss and a few other playmakers talking after the meeting. Apparently Hudak used his VP card to get Barnard to vote for Nolan while giving Zawarski the VP. Can zawarski be that bad? Wonder what Abe thought of Barnard acting without orders. Breslin just sat there like a deer in the headlights waiting for his cue to talk. Should be an interesting 2 years.

zoid said...

Zawarski is that bad. He has no clue. He thinks he is a hell of a lot better and smarter than he is. After two years he still does not get it. Phil Barnard made the right choice for president for the betterment of BT. Given the numbers in the audience it is clear that the caring and educated taxpayers and residents plan to hold this board accountable and will be keeping tabs on them every step of the way. I suppose Zawarski is going to bring up the single trash hauler issue again, ha ha, that has crashed and burned several times over the last 10 years, it would be a waste of time!! Zawarski is so connected to Abe at the hip, he should just go to work for him full time. Cronyism is not a good thing!!