Thursday, August 18, 2016
Allentown Now Has 221-Man Police Force
William Allen High School basketball coach Doug Snyder was honored by Allentown City Council last night with the Watson Skinner award, named after a prominent former City Council member and educator. He played hoops at William Allen High School himself, after which he went on to play for Princeton, where he was coached by the legendary Pete Carril.
After graduating, Snyder coached basketball at Princeton High School until he was able to return to William Allen, where he has achieved three district titles in his coaching career. Snyder stated that Skinner was actually his guidance counselor. "That man loved words, loved speech and loved language," he said.
Allen's basketball squad should be exciting this year, but will still lose to Central.
City Council also voted last night to hire two new police officers, bringing the strength level to 221. Chief Keith Morris stated that the force will be fully staffed once he has 222 officers. There are only seven or eight females, he said. "I really think that we need more females," observed Cynthia Mota, who nevertheless complimented the Chief. "I see you everywhere," she remarked.
Council also fielded several complaints from members of the public.
David Keschl, president of a local crime watch and small business owner, complained about "fly-by-night” businesses, and said one was operating at that very moment at 751 South Filmore, selling washers and dryers. His wife has notified Allentown officials several times, but nothing is being done. "They don't pay taxes, they don't have permits or anything," he complained."They're down there right now. They have four washers and dryers to sell." They've been there three months. "That's one long yard sale, joked Keschl.
"You can't set up shop on a corner street," remarked Council Prez Ray O'Connell.
Daryl Hendricks said he'd make it a point to go by there himself.
His dryer is on the fritz.
O'Connell said he'd be there, too.
He needs a washing machine.
Tenant advocate Kenneth Heffentraeger said that's nothing. At Linden and American Parkway, he claims an illegal business has been operating for months. He has also called on Mayor Edwin Pawlowski to resign over numerous lies and five broken promises to walk the 8th and 10th wards. "Nothing has happened outside the NIZ. He let the downtown disintegrate and become a hell hole."
Julio Guridy said he'd walk it. Hendricks added that he’s asked to go along on walks and has been ignored.
Rev. Daniel Blount complained about conditions at Valania Park on Union Street. "Do all lives matter?"he asked. He noted that parks in other areas of the City have nice playgrounds and restrooms, while the 50 kids at "the little community that the blacks have" use port-a-johns. "I want the same thing for us," he said.
"I agree with you," answered O'Connell, not just for the black community "but the community in general." Cynthia Mota noted that park improvements are planned, but behind other projects. "It's high time we stop being last on the list," responded Blount.
"If we can improve the quality of life for the kids and the community that attend that park, we want to do so," promised O'Connell.
"I know where you live," joked Rev. Blount. "I know where you hang out, too," O'Connell responded.
Louis Hershman complained that a five year capital plan, which must be produced by the Mayor, has yet to be produced. He suggested that Pawlowski might not want the public to see it.