Bethlehem Press

Monday, October 15, 2018

Residents, council praise conversion ordinance

Tuesday, July 24, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in Local News

Advocates for the bill banning conversion or restorative therapy for minors in the jurisdiction of the City of Bethlehem were happy when City Council voted 6 – 0 (Councilman Michael Colon was absent) to pass the bill.

“You are the 17th municipality in Pennsylvania to pass a similar ordinance,” said Adrian Shanker, a leader in the LGBT community. He is the founder and executive director of the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center in Allentown. He serves on the advisory board for Pennsylvania Department of Health’s Office of Health Equity among other responsibilities.

Valley nonprofits in pipline to receive grants

Tuesday, July 24, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in Local News

The Pennsylvania Music Preservation Society will probably get a $2,000 grant, $3,000 less than the newly formed nonprofit had requested. Lehigh County Commissioners approved a motion at its July 11 meeting to amend the bill to reduce the original $5,000 to $2,000.

At the previous meeting, at the first reading of the bill, Commissioner Percy Dougherty opposed the idea of giving $5,000 saying other deserving organizations who have been operational for many years were only getting $2,000. The bill will be voted on again at the next commissioners meeting.

Ordinance outlaws conversion therapy

Monday, July 16, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in Local News

Conversion therapy for minors is now illegal in Bethlehem. City council voted 7-0 July 3 to revoke the business license of any licensed therapist found to be providing a service that seeks to, according to the stature, “change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity, including efforts to change behaviors or gender expressions or to reduce or eliminate sexual or romantic attraction or feeling toward the individuals of the same gender.”

Allentown passed a similar ordinance in 2017.

‘Never forget who you are’ Bethlehem graduates recipients of grants, scholarships

Monday, July 16, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in School

Not everyone can have a legacy such as the one left by Dr. James F. Goodwin, Jr.; one that continues to influence the lives of young men and women long after his passing. The African-American physician, who practiced medicine in Bethlehem in 1935, had struggled to get his education. According to a biography, the experience led him to start a scholarship program to “help deserving Negro students who needed financial assistance.”

LEHIGH COUNTY COMMISSIONERS Worker opposed to union dues withdrawal

Tuesday, July 10, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in Local News

It’s not often U. S. Supreme Court decisions are cited in the chambers of the Lehigh County Commissioners, but county employee Francisco Molina did exactly that June 27 when he addressed the board during the public comment portion of the agenda.

Medina, who has worked for the county since 2004 and for the Lehigh County Office of Children and Youth since 2006, said he does not want the county to provide his banking information to Service Employees International Union for automatic withdrawals of union dues from his bank account.

Honesty sinks LGBT center grant

Tuesday, June 26, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in Local News

A $5,000 grant to the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center failed last week when one of the sponsors of it, Amy Zanelli, abstained from voting for the bill; however, she then watched the votes split between the remaining eight commissioners, 4–4. With Zanelli’s vote, the bill would have passed. She said she abstained because, “I volunteer for, contribute to, and benefit from” the Bradbury-Sullivan Community Center, “I will abstain.”

Honesty sinks LGBT center grant

Tuesday, June 26, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in Local News

A $5,000 grant to the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center failed last week when one of the sponsors of it, Amy Zanelli, abstained from voting for the bill; however, she then watched the votes split between the remaining eight commissioners, 4–4. With Zanelli’s vote, the bill would have passed. She said she abstained because, “I volunteer for, contribute to, and benefit from” the Bradbury-Sullivan Community Center, “I will abstain.”

Honesty sinks LGBT grant

Tuesday, June 19, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in Local News

A $5,000 grant to the Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center failed last week when the one of the sponsors of the bill, Amy Zanelli, abstained from voting for the bill; however, she then watched the votes split between the remaining eight commissioners, 4–4. With Zanelli’s vote, the bill would have passed. She said that she abstained because, “I volunteer for, contribute to, and benefit from” the Bradbury-Sullivan Community Center, “I will abstain.”

Marijuana one step closer to being legal

Tuesday, June 12, 2018 by DOUGLAS GRAVES in Local News

Decriminalizing marijuana is firmly on the agenda for the next meeting of Bethlehem City Council ,as members unanimously approved the measure in their first reading. This procedure ensures that the ordinance will get a final vote and approval at the next scheduled regular meeting June 19.

All members of council expressed support of the ordinance to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana. A small amount is defined as “thirty grams or less of marijuana or eight grams or less of hashish.”