It appears that the Lame Duck Commissioners are trying passing their own agenda before the end of their term.
Bill 2011-83 An Ordinance Proposing a Referendum Amending the Home Rule Charter to Place Term Limits Upon Certain Elected Officials of Lehigh County.
This is being Sponsored by Commissioners Browning and Roman.
We all know that, Commissioner Browning lost his bid for reelection in the Primary last spring. We also know that Commissioner Roman lost his bid for Sheriff in November.
Could this be “SOUR GRAPES”?? This would effect the following Offices.
The County Executive would be able to run for another term for a total of 12 years. Perhaps this is a favor from Commissioner Browning.
The Coroner would be limited and could not run again. Mr Grimm has been doing a really good job in this position it would be a real travesty if he were not able to continue.
The Clerk of Judicial Records would not be able to run again. Andrea E. Naugle has been praised by both the Administration and the Commissioners for the job she has been doing. Why would anyone want to change, what is working ?
The County Sheriff would not be able to run again. Although, I have at times, been critical of the County Sheriff, I believe that, this Elected Office falls in the same category as the other Row Officers positions. If the people of the County decide to reelect someone to office then so be it. I don't know what Commissioner Browning reason is but, I do believe what Commissioner Romans is.
The County Controller position has been filled by newly Elected Glenn Eckhart. If he doses the job, I believe he will, I would not like to see him unable to continue in the future
It appears the District Attorney is Exempt from this Bill. I have not been able to determine the reasoning behind this other then the comments made by Commissioner Roman. He stated that the District Attorney is Paid by the State. Commissioner Dougherty stated that a portion of the District Attorney’s salary is refunded to the County by the State and this has not been forthcoming as it should be. The simple fact is that The District Attorney is Elected by the County Residences like any other County Elected Office. Commissioner Dougherty eluded to the possibility that Commissioner Browning and Roman didn’t want to upset or otherwise take on District Attorney Jim Martin. I believe that Commissioner Dougherty ,may be correct, in his take on this.
Commissioner Roman stated that he feels that Commissioners and Row Officers should not be Career Politicians. I submit that being a Commissioner holding a “part time” position on the County Board with a nominal pay does not qualify as a Career.
As for the Coroner,Sheriff,Clerk of Judicial Records and Controller these are in essence just administrative positions. The reason for these positions to be Elected and not Appointed, is to try and keep these positions independent from the Administration. As a rule, when a new County Executive is elected the entire Administration is changed. If the Row Officers were included in this change, it could be detrimental to the operation of the County. This also prevents [to some extent] the over reaching power of the County Executive
In conclusion it is my opinion that this Bill was not presented for the betterment of County Government but, too fulfill someones personal agenda.
Bill 2011-77 Approving a Second Amendment to the Lease Agreement with LV Baseball LP , Assignees of Gracie Baseball,L.P. (Sponsored by Commissioners Dougherty and Browning.
This bill really makes no sense at all. I suspect that there is some motive behind this that I am on aware of.
It seems that this bill enables the refinancing of the Ball Park to enjoy a lower interest rate. This in itself sound OK. However, this could not happen until 2017 if at all. Why this is being proposed now is what prompts my interest. Right now, the Baseball franchise is not committed to the Lease for the term of the Bond . From my understanding, this Bill will not change that. We are talking about interest rates being lower in 2017. But, why now??? I understand that this “Lane Duck” Board may want to complete its agenda before the end of the year. But, What is the agenda if this Bill. Commissioner Browning appeared .to become, slightly upset with me when I questioned this Bill. This all the more reason for apprehension. Something is going on here, that the Public should know. I wonder, if this would have passed the newly Elected Board of Commissioners.