Bethlehem Press

Thursday, August 16, 2018

FREEMANSBURG NNO

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Elvis stars in annual community event

National Night Out, celebrated nationally on the first Tuesday in August, is an opportunity for the community to get everyone together with first responders in a positive setting. Instead of a motor vehicle accident or a traffic stop, it’s hot dogs and pizza. Freemansburg, one of the Lehigh Valley’s smallest communities, has been hosting this event for the past five years. Where else can you tell a borough council member or the mayor that you want your hot dog well done?

New voting machines next year?

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Pennsylvania’s Department of State has mandated all 67 counties must have new voting machines in place – with paper trails - in time for the next presidential election. But it only has $14.1 million in grants available for voting systems expected to cost $147 million. The counties will have to pick up the slack. Also, only one system with a paper trail has been certified, and county officials like another system.

New voting machines next year?

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Pennsylvania’s Department of State has mandated all 67 counties must have new voting machines in place – with paper trails - in time for the next presidential election. But it only has $14.1 million in grants available for voting systems expected to cost $147 million. The counties will have to pick up the slack. Also, only one system with a paper trail has been certified, and county officials like another system.

Airbnb, county reach tax agreement

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Airbnb is a global Internet travel community enabling people to rent out their homes and become hospitability entrepreneurs. There are 140 hosts in Northampton County who welcomed 8,800 guests to share their homes in the past year. In 2017, the typical host took in $3,900 in annual income from sharing a home for approximately three nights per month. Starting this month, Northampton County will be collecting hotel taxes from this online service.

DA says gang is behind Dumpster killing

Friday, August 10, 2018 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

In late April, Bethlehem police responded to what they thought was a burning mannequin at the Parkhurst Apartments complex. What they discovered was a grisly horror. It was a human being, later identified as Tyrell Michael Holmes, age 18. He had been stabbed and set afire while still alive, as determined by the presence of smoke in his lungs.

Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli determined that Holmes had been conscious and in extreme pain, and that an accelerant had been used to help burn him alive. No charges have been filed.

BETHLEHEM-Three variances granted with alacrity

Monday, August 6, 2018 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Bethlehem’s Zoning Hearing Board is known for marathon meetings, sometimes taking testimony over several nights before deciding whether to grant a variance. But at their July 25 meeting, they heard three separate zoning appeals in less than an hour.

Eugene Takacs was granted a dimensional variance to erect a 15-by-15 foot deck at his property at 1621 East Blvd. He is allowed 25 percent building coverage on his lot, but the deck puts him at 27 percent.

NORTHAMPTON COUNTY-General Purpose Authority is revolving door of people, problems

Monday, August 6, 2018 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

At their Aug 2 meeting, Northampton County Council members voted unanimously to appoint Administrator Charles Dertinger to the county’s beleaguered General Purpose Authority (GPA). He replaces Executive Lamont McClure, who served for exactly eight days. McClure quipped that he now holds the record as the GPA board member with the least amount of service.

McClure resigned in response to a complaint by GPA Chair Shawn Langen, who argued that a 1941 Pa. Supreme Court decision precludes the executive from service. Rather than litigate the matter, McClure bowed out.

HANOVER = Township joins growing chorus for state gerrymandering reform

Monday, August 6, 2018 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

You can add Hanover Townshipp (Northampton County) to the list over 270 counties, cities, townships and boroughs fighting for redistricting reform in Harrisburg. At their July 24 meeting, supervisors voted 3-1 in favor of a resolution supporting a constitutional change that will allow an independent and inclusive commission to draw the boundaries for state legislative and congressional races.

Supporting this nonbinding resolution were Susan Lawless, Michael Prendeville and John Diacogiannis. Voting No was Steve Salvesen. Jack Nagle was absent.