Sunday, June 26, 2016


Wednesday, May 4, 2016

The Lehigh Township Zoning Hearing Board convened onApril 14 and granted Walmart approval for three variances so it can develop a new store and gas station on the land at Route 145 and Birch Road. Unfortunately, this project does not adhere to developing the area in a sustainable way.

Tuesday, May 3, 2016
The seriousness of the day’s affairs can be seen on the face of Tamaqua cop Doug Springer in the midst of Monday’s large-scale drug offensive. DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS

The streets in eastern Schuylkill County are a bit safer after Monday’s roundup of more than two dozen suspected drug dealers or users.

Agents from the Schuylkill County Drug Task Force, Schuylkill County Sheriff’s Office, state police, and local police departments joined forces to converge on drug hot spots in the Tamaqua area, executing warrants for 29 suspected drug offenders.

It was the largest drug sting operation in eastern Schuylkill County since Monday, June 16, 2014, when a similar sting took 17 accused dealers or users off the streets.

Monday, May 2, 2016
The bison could soon become the national mammal of the United States. Lawmakers called the bison the embodiment of American strength and resilience and said it reflects the nation’s pioneer spirit. AP Photo/Matthew Brown

There are few things that politicians can agree on these days.

Partisan politics run rampant in the halls of the divided Congress and the president’s lame-duck last year in office has produced little in the way of bipartisan legislation. Party infighting has made this a very divisive presidential election season.

The chasm is wide when it comes to party ideology, but there is one cause that both Republicans and Democrats have been able to unite and rally behind. Last week both the House and Senate approved a bill that designates the bison as the national mammal.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber recently held their annual mayors’ dinner at Art Quest in Bethlehem and awarded me the mayor of the year award.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

It is ironic that within the article on the PennEast/UGI Community Connector Grant awards (April 25) it states the grants are given to “Conserve important local habitat, enhance open space, recreational areas and wildlife habitat, and preserve community culture and heritage” among other criteria.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

First, ISIS is on the rise worldwide.

I don’t know about anyone else, but when I see numbers like 50, 80 or 100 dead and hundreds injured, then I hear we took out one or two (even if they’re big deals.) I think the numbers don’t make sense. When will we stop talking and start kicking some butt?

Second, Mr. Trump gives us this stuff about how wonderful he is and what things he’s going to do. But when put in a corner, there’s no answer. Those who follow him are like lemmings. If he jumps from a cliff, they’ll all follow. I don’t understand why. However, please proceed.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Recently, in a street interview segment, two passers-by were shown pictures of famous Americans, one of President Ronald Reagan and the second of Martin Luther King Jr.

Both people were clueless.

It is a sad commentary on where we are as a nation when American young adults can’t identify the most prominent leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement or the U.S. president who was the primary figure leading to the downfall of communist governments in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

The rising drug epidemic shows itself in many different ways.

It’s evident in higher crime rates, an increase in the number of overdoses and drug-related deaths and even in prison overcrowding.

A Times News report Tuesday discussed an overflow of inmates in Schuylkill County jail.

There is so much overcrowding that officials have been forced to transfer 26 male inmates to the George W. Hill Correctional Facility, Delaware County, at a cost of $65 a day each, and women to the state Correctional Institution at Muncy, Lycoming County, at a cost of $60 a day each.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

News media from across the state made a big deal out of the announcement last week by Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli that his office would not prosecute teachers who use reasonable force to defend themselves against unruly students.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The chief of the Pennsylvania Economy League’s central division calls it the “dirty little secret” of Pennsylvania local government. Citing a recent Associated Press story, Gerald Cross says that two-thirds of the commonwealth’s municipalities do not pay for police protection. Instead, they receive those services totally or in part for free from the Pennsylvania State Police. One recent estimate for the cost was pegged at $540 million, which was more than half of the state police’s annual budget.