Northampton County Council. - It seems clear that top vote-getter Peg Ferraro will be elected Council President, a position she has always wanted. I doubt the body will confirm Executive John Brown's two new cabinet selections - Solicitor Vic Scomilio and Public Defender Bob Sletvold - until they meet during a regular meeting.
When they do meet, they should reject Sletvold's nomination as Public Defender. That's because the Court has told The Express Times it is unwilling to let her hear any case in which any Public Defender is involved. Judge Sletvold refused to speak to me about it last week.
True, she can still hear criminal cases in which the public defender's office has no involvement, but that's a relatively minuscule amount of the caseload. What this will do is create a tremendous administrative headache for a court that has other, more pressing, matters on its plate, like a speedy trial.
If Sletvold is unwilling to withdraw his nomination on his own, Council should vote against his confirmation. He is an excellent lawyer who could serve as conflicts counsel or in any of a number of other capacities. But this is one Sletvold too many.
This will be an early test for the new Republican majority on Council. Will they be more interested in party loyalty or good government?
Instead of being a political perk, the Public Defender position should be a full-time position held by a person who has made a career of criminal law. In fact, that's precisely what has just happened in Lehigh County.
Lehigh County Commissioners - Tom Creighton will be the swing vote in deciding whether Lisa Scheller, Scott Ott or Percy Dougherty is the next chair. Vic Mazziotti will have to consult with his parish priest.
Bethlehem. - There is little doubt that Willie Reynolds will be the next president of City Council. According to The Morning Call, there is some grumbling about Mayor Bob Donchez' pick for police chief - Lt. Mark DiLuzio. He may not be the person who Reynolds would have selected, but Willie's not the mayor. I've heard nothing that would disqualify DiLuzio, unless being popular with rank-and-file police officers is a disqualification.
Bangor. - Mayor Joe Capozzolo, who is succeeding NorCo Exec John Brown, is being sworn into office by Congressman Matt Cartwright. "I will have a heavy heart without my friend John Kasten [borough manager] there, but I look forward to serving the people of Bangor Borough and honoring the memory of Mr. Kasten."
Cap, as people call him, told me he needs to hire a new police chief.
Upper Mount Bethel. - Though the northern tier is in the midst of a shit storm over land owner Ron Angle's plans to fertilize his farms with sludge, they have to pick a new Chair. Judith Henckel, who chaired the board last year, was voted out of office. She has been replaced by David Due. Right after they pick a new chair, the shit slinging resumes.
Bethlehem Township. - President Paul Weiss was defeated in the elections last year, though he plans to remain involved in Township business. He was defeated by Pat Breslin. Marty Zaworski plans to make a play for President, but I'm sure Tom Nolan is interested in the presidency, too. My guess is that Nolan will be elected.
The township has been actively engaged in finding a new manager to replace Howard Kutzler, who resigned late last year for a position in South Whitehall.
It is likely that a new manager will be announced tonight.
Hanover Township. - There is no intrigue here. No power games. They'll probably flip a coin.
Please feel free to fill me in with your own palace intrigues.