The Pennsylvania School Boards Association and Bethlehem administrators are disappointed in a recent vote by the Senate Education Committee to approve Senate Bill 2, creating Education Savings Accounts, or vouchers, that take state tax money out of neighborhood public schools for use at private schools.
The Bethlehem Garden Club, in partnership with the City of Bethlehem, recently held a Blue Star Memorial Highway Maker dedication with the unveiling of a marker installed in the City’s Rose Garden. The initiative began with a bequest to the Garden Club from the estate of Marion Clewell nearly six years before, according to project chair Liz Lorenz.
As time continues to pass, the legacy of the Bethlehem Steel is still running strongly in the blood of many Lehigh Valley families. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the closing of the Bethlehem Steel coke works, one of the final pieces of Bethlehem Steel to meet its demise. Most Lehigh Valley residents that are baby boomers or generation X-ers either worked at the steel or have memories of their parents and grandparents working there.
The Musikfest Cafe at the ArtsQuest Center was alive with movement and conversation as close to 90 participants and volunteers role-played the lives of low-income individuals and families on the morning of April 19. The Poverty Simulation, hosted by the Volunteer Center, Moravian College and Leadership Lehigh Valley, was offered as a way to raise awareness and begin discussions within the community of how to combat issues of poverty.
Architect Robin Reshetar, accompanied by attorney Bradford Lare, encountered resistance again from the Bethlehem Historic Conservation Commission for proposed new construction on the Grace Mansion property that would involve the demolition of a one-story commercial addition, the entire back porch of the two-and-a-half story circa 1885 mansion, as well as a one-story detached brick “auto house.” Reshetar sought approval for the construction of six new townhouses instead of the previously rejected five-story apartment building at the rear of the property. The revised proposal for 114 W.
Mayor’s South Side Task Force Chairman Roger Hudak declared “The cleanup was a phenomenal success, as usual,” at the April 24 SSTF meeting. He then turned it over to Adrienne Washington from the Lehigh University Community & Regional Affairs to comment on April 14’s Spring Southside Cleanup event. She said “There was a great student turnout,” including Donegan ES students taking part earlier.
The American Association of University Women (AAUW) Bethlehem held its 56th annual used book fair from April 26 through 30 at the Memorial Pool Building, offering an estimated 60,000 to 70,000 titles for sale. Book sale co-coordinator Debbie Spinney said the April 26 preview sale was a big success and sale organizers projected earning $27,000, which is used to provide scholarships for young women. The 2018 scholarship award winners will be announced at a reception in May.
In a surprise announcement, Saucon Valley HS Principle Beth Guarriello has submitted her resignation to the district. Guarriello is leaving after a short stint of less than a year effective July 1.
She has been hired as the new principle at Southern Lehigh HS at a salary of $126,000. Prior to her hiring at Saucon Valley, she was the assistant principle at Southern Lehigh for three years. Previously she was an assistant principle at Liberty and a science teacher during her long career.
The integrity of the vote is central to the democratic process. But integrity isn’t always cheap.
It will cost Lehigh County between $3.5 to $4 million to comply with a new voter verifiable paper voting system mandate required by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to prevent Election Day hacking. The new system requires a paper trail for each ballot cast.
“We saw it coming,” said Timothy Benyo, Lehigh County’s chief clerk of registration and elections, of the changes. “We would have been moving toward it eventually.”
He has volunteered for more than 40 years, and gives selflessly to all causes he holds dear.
It should come as no surprise, then, that Nick Hawkey recently received the Distinguished Citizen Award.
Hawkey, a retired corporal, U.S. Marine Corps, recently received the distinction from the Bethlehem Detachment Marine Corps League during the 43rd Annual Mess Night.
“I was totally honored,” Hawkey said. “I was thrilled with the fact that I knew a lot of the people that had won it over the years.”