Thursday, March 21, 2013
Lehigh County Commissioner Brad Osborne chastises a “bloc” of fellow commissioners who he says allowed their personal agenda to overshadow their duty in a vote on the Lehigh County Authority.
Thursday, March 21
By Brad Osborne Five hundred years ago, Niccolo Machiavelli wrote a book titled The Prince. One phrase from that text that remains a paradox today is “the end justifies the means.” In other words, an action can be justified by the intended outcome rather than the action itself. On Wednesday, March 13, five members of the Lehigh County Board of Commissioners exercised the political equivalent of this maxim. In doing so, they not only diminished the integrity of our office, but also increased the uncertainty of the future cost of water and wastewater treatment in Lehigh County. How is that? The Board voted, by the slimmest of margins, 5-4, to deny the extension of the Lehigh County Authority (LCA) charter, in order that they not meet the …
Saturday, November 24, 2012
In an editorial submitted to Patch, Brad Osborne, chairman of the Lehigh County Commissioners, details his reasoning behind a controversial budget vote that upset fellow Republicans.
Saturday, November 24, 2012
Brad Osborne, chairman of the Lehigh County Commissioners, came under fire this week after a controversial vote against a budget proposed by fellow Republicans. There was talk of stripping him of his chairman title but the Morning Call reports there was no attempt to do so at the Nov. 20 meeting. Osborne submitted the following editorial to Patch explaining his budget vote: Taxpayers in Lehigh County deserve real fiscal discipline from their elected officials. To effectively reduce the size of county government and lower taxes, it will be necessary to identify and eliminate wasteful expenditures, implement efficiencies, and frankly, learn to live without all but the most essential spending – not just for today, but also for the long term…
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
New Lehigh County Executive's first official act was to present the 2013 budget that includes a tax credit of about $44 for homeowners.
Bill Hansell was sworn in as Lehigh County Executive on Tuesday and immediately set to work as he delivered the 2013 budget to county commissioners. The Lower Macungie resident said the $365 million budget will provide a onetime expiring tax credit of about $44 to county homeowners. Real estate taxes will remain at 11.9 mils, based on valuations prior to Lehigh County’s reassessment, which is expected to be complete at the end of November. Commissioners will begin hearings on the budget on Sept. 13 and plan to vote on it Oct. 24. Hansell has spent a lot of time in government and advising governments. He served as Catasauqua Borough manager, South Whitehall’s first township manager when it became a first-class township in 1966 and later …
Thursday, August 9, 2012
Lehigh County Commissioners appoint Bill Hansell to fill former Bethlehem Mayor Don Cunningham's unexpired term.
Former Lehigh County Commissioner Bill Hansell has been named acting Lehigh County Executive. Hansell, 75, of Lower Macungie, was appointed on a 8-0 vote Wednesday by Lehigh County Commissioners to fill Don Cunningham's unexpired term, according to lehighvalleylive.com. Hansell, a former Lehigh County commissioner, has worked as a consultant for governments and associations. Hansell has spent a half century in and around local government. He was South Whitehall’s first township manager when it became a First Class Township in 1966. He also served as Catasauqua Borough manager and Allentown business administrator. He has led the Pennsylvania League of Cities and spent 20 years as director of the International City/County Management …
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
County commissioners could kill plans for a regional health department on Aug. 8 and proponents of the project are mobilizing support.
Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Proponents of a regional health department are asking for support as county officials get ready to vote on the project. The Lehigh County Commissioners will be meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 8 at 7:30 p.m. in the Public Hearing Room of the Lehigh County Government Center, 17 S. Seventh St., Allentown. It is expected that they will vote on a bill to withdraw from the bi-county health department for Lehigh and Northampton counties that is being sponsored by six of the nine commissioners. Renew Lehigh Valley says, "A regional health department would increase access to public health services, allow for greater coordination in identifying and addressing health needs, and promote more efficient use of public health resources. A health department …
Wednesday, January 4, 2012
The former South Whitehall Township commissioner, a newcomer to the board, was elected chairman in the fifth round of voting, after a consensus on three other commissioners failed to be reached.
Thursday, July 28, 2011
Refinancing of bonds at Internet auction nets county interest rate of about 1 percent, down from 5 percent.
In the space of 20 minutes Wednesday morning, Lehigh County saved almost $4 million dollars. The savings came from refinancing $36.5 million in 2001 bonds through an auction on the Internet that attracted 15 bidders and 85 bids, according to Tom Muller, county director of administration. The winning interest rate was 1.004268 percent from Guggenheim Securities of New York. The auction started at 11 a.m. and was over by 11:20 a.m. The savings will be spread over two years. Muller said the turmoil in Washington over the deadline to raise the federal debt ceiling might have contributed to the number of bidders and the very low interest rate. Lehigh County’s Aa1 bond rating from Moody’s Investors Service means “we’re viewed as a very safe …
Thursday, June 23, 2011
Lehigh County had high hopes for the 6.78 acres the park is buying for $2.75 million.
Lehigh County received only one bid for 6.78 acres of land next to Dorney Park that a county commissioner has called “one of the most valuable properties the county owns.” That bidder, Dorney Park, is on track to buy the land at the southwest corner of Dorney Park Road and Hillview Road in South Whitehall Township for $2.75 million. At Wednesday’s meeting, some county commissioners said they fear Dorney will turn it into a parking lot. The county had high hopes for the land when it put it up for sale last January. The tract is near Interstate 78 and Hamilton Boulevard and next to the county’s biggest tourist attraction -- Dorney Park. The park generates $1 million to $1.3 million annually in amusement tax revenue for South Whitehall. “…