Bethlehem Press

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Problem-solving courts save money

Thursday, August 4, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Problem solving courts deal proactively with the underlying reasons for criminal behavior. A person with mental illness might harass his or her neighbors. A drug addict might steal from family and friends. Both can and are often sent to jail, but unless the addiction or mental illness is addressed, jails become revolving doors for repeat offenders. It does them or their victims no good. It costs the rest of us money.

Celebrating ‘the Main Street mayor’ - Over 350 people brave 90-degree temperatures to pay their respects to the late Gordon Mowrer

Thursday, August 4, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Bethlehem said goodbye to Gordie Mowrer, known as The Main Street Mayor, in a memorial service July 26 at Bethlehem’s Central Moravian Church. Over 350 people braved 90-degree temperatures to pay their respects, but Mowrer, a former Moravian Pastor known for his gentle humor, had a surprise for them.

Warning: City Hall may be dangerous

Thursday, August 4, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Bethlehem’s Town Hall, an aging and poorly lit rotunda, may very well be a public health hazard, especially for older citizens. Whether it is city council, the planning commission or zoning hearing board, members of the public often trip when entering the room. They also often lose their footing when approaching a microphone. The most recent example of this occurred on July 27, just as the zoning hearing board was about to consider four matters.

NORCO-Car registration fee hiked gets the ax

Thursday, August 4, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

In Pennsylvania, it costs $36 to register your car every year. An effort to raise that fee to $41 in Northampton County failed at council’s July 21 meeting.

For the measure to pass, five votes were needed. There were only three. Bob Werner, one of two sponsors for this rate hike and was “all for it.” But he was absent. Mat Benol, who originally called it a “good idea,” changed his mind.

Farmers slam open space funding

Thursday, July 21, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Residents from farming communities in the Mount Bethels and Plainfield Township challenged Executive John Brown’s commitment to farmland preservation at Northampton County Council’s July 8 meeting, accusing him of “plundering” the half mill of real estate taxes set aside 10 years ago for open space.

But Brown said he is the victim of “misinformation out in the public sector” and that his resolve remains unchanged.

Weights, measures could be abolished

Thursday, July 21, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

By a narrow 5-4 margin, Northampton County Council voted July 8 to defeat a rate hike sought by weights and measures, the county department that makes sure you’re really getting a gallon of gas and that a pound of balogna is not just baloney. Three members of council – Hayden Phillips, Seth Vaughn and John Cusick – made clear that they would like to abolish the department.

Weights, measures could be abolished

Thursday, July 21, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

By a narrow 5-4 margin, Northampton County Council voted July 8 to defeat a rate hike sought by weights and measures, the county department that makes sure you’re really getting a gallon of gas and that a pound of balogna is not just baloney. Three members of council – Hayden Phillips, Seth Vaughn and John Cusick – made clear that they would like to abolish the department.

Weights, measures could be abolished

Thursday, July 21, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

By a narrow 5-4 margin, Northampton County Council voted July 8 to defeat a rate hike sought by weights and measures, the county department that makes sure you’re really getting a gallon of gas and that a pound of balogna is not just baloney. Three members of council – Hayden Phillips, Seth Vaughn and John Cusick – made clear that they would like to abolish the department.

Weights, measures could be abolished

Thursday, July 21, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

By a narrow 5-4 margin, Northampton County Council voted July 8 to defeat a rate hike sought by weights and measures, the county department that makes sure you’re really getting a gallon of gas and that a pound of balogna is not just baloney. Three members of council – Hayden Phillips, Seth Vaughn and John Cusick – made clear that they would like to abolish the department.

Ramadan meal an inter-faith event

Thursday, July 21, 2016 by BERNIE O’HARE in Local News

Bethlehem’s Zoning Hearing Board was scheduled to hear four cases June 22. Meetings can get pretty crowded, but it was still a surprise to see a big tent pitched outside city hall before the hearings started.

Fortunately, the 150 people within the tent had no interest in variances or nonconforming uses. They were there for a Ramadan dinner and included people of all faiths – Muslim, Jew and Christian. The meal, completely free of charge, was for anyone interested in interfaith and intercultural dialogue.