|The StickerGang's Trevor Gehret is a townie|
Jack's a Townie. It is Herbst who stood up to ESSROC, as a citizen, and demanded they do something about the cement dust that settles everywhere, helping make the Lehigh Valley one of the air pollution capitals of the United States. The result was an underground tunnel to transport material from one plant to another. Herbst also successfully fought efforts to ruin the Memorial Square Park on Green Street, where kids play baseball day and night. A secretive Council wanted to turn it into a new borough government center and police station. As a Council member, he persuaded colleagues to finally start following the Sunshine Act. He even raised the money for a skate park and dog park, defeating all kinds of opposition.
And ac Chair of the Police Committee, he held them accountable.
He actually represented the people and tried to make their lives better. So naturally, the rest of council hated him. Not one would vote to support his appointment to a vacancy on Council, after he lost his Mayoral election.
In a way, they may have done him a favor. His health has never been good. He's had several close calls in recent years with his heart. It's always been too big for the town in which he lives.
Herbst had no fear of Trachta, despite the files the Chief kept on everyone or the intimidation of Jack's wife by always parking near her while she was on duty. Jack ignored the Chief's petty behavior, and tried to make the community better for everyone. Though he himself was a masterful baseball coach, he embraced the skaters, recognizing before many others that these are athletes every bit as much as someone who can dunk.
In stark contrast to Herbst, we have current Borough Council member Carl Fischl. He told me the one and only time I ever talked to him that he would have voted to destroy the park on Green Street. Now this guy is waging war on the townies.
In addition to practically salivating over the prospect of doubling the fines for parking tickets as a way of taking aim at those unable to afford homes with their own driveways and garages, Fischl persuaded the rest of Council to adopt a rental inspection ordinance so that they can keep track of those dirty renters.
Fischl has also publicly complained that, unlike him, nobody in the downtown has kept their properties as well maintained as he. I see. That may be because, unlike him, most downtown residents have not spent a lifetime sucking on the public teat as a teacher and football coach. They may not have the benefits and pension he was lucky enough to grab.
The difference between a guy like Fischl and a guy like Herbst is night and day. Herbst tried to make government more inclusive, while Fischl believes you must be a member of the landed gentry, like him, to have a say.
Fischl now heads up the Police Committee and apparently had the final call in firing Herbst.
He told her that her job is seasonal and she could be let go at will.
He's full of shit.
The fact is that Karen Herbst has been employed for eight years, having started under Chief Ruch. She only filled out an application once. Were she seasonal, she'd have to do it every year. She actually had a legitimate property interest in that job. And she was fired because, like her husband, she exercises her First Amendment rights. She's a Townie.
So is the Sticker Gang, who have stood up to Trachta.
So am I.