Women Demanding Zabel Quit — A demonstration to demand the resignation of Pennsylvania State Rep. Mike Zabel (D-163) is scheduled for 10 a.m., Wednesday, March 8.
Zabel stands accused of unceasingly groping lobbyist Andi Perez despite her pleas for him to stop. He followed her even after she moved away, she says.
Zabel in a letter last week acknowledge he has a “problem” (LOL) and will seek treatment (LOL) but refuses to step aside.
The 163rd District is the 3rd, 4th and 5th wards of Darby Township; the 3rd and 4th districts of Upper Darby Township, along with divisions, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9 and 11 of District 3, and divisions 4,6, 8 and 9 of district 5; and the borough of Aldan, Clifton Heights and Collingdale.
Internet Enabled Poll Pads Considered For Delco — Joy Schwartz, March 1, confronted Delaware County Council with its plan to replace the numbered list of voters, which is paper, with electronic poll pads.
The plan had been revealed earlier that day when a representative for KNOWiNK, an election technology firm, made a pitch to the Election Board.
Mrs. Schwartz, who has the Republican endorsement for this year’s county council race, noted that the poll pads are accessible to the internet and the software that runs them is proprietary.
She noted that the cost of elections has quadrupled over the last few years and things are far less efficient.
Councilwoman Christine A. Reuther responded during council comments that KNOWiNK is offering devices for free and electronic poll pads will soon be required by the state.
Everything offered for free by a for-profit company comes with a price, and proprietary software has no business in elections. Ms. Reuther pats herself on the back for helping de-privatize the county prison and now is just fine with privatizing our elections. Elections should never be privatized and proprietary software is unnecessary on election machines. It would be rather simple for our governments to hire contractors to write election software, which the public would own. We’ve known how to make computers tabulate since the 1940s.
Several other citizens brought up concerns about Delco elections including Kathy Buckley of Edgmont, who responded to an elderly man’s rant about election integrity activists and again described how, while a poll worker, was removed from the Wharf Counting Center the day after the 2022 primary election after she called attention to a unexpected bagful of ballots
Delco Finalizes Deal With Broomall’s Lake County Club; Howard Lazurus To Retire As Executive Director — Delaware County Council, last night, March 1, announced that an agreement has been finalized with Broomall’s Lake Country Club. The county will not rebuild the dam at the club at 3 State Road, Media; will purchase an easement from the club to conserve open space; and has a deal with it to allow for long term parking there.
Several citizens associated with Glen Providence Park just downstream from the club gave high praise to council.
Also Executive Director Howard S. Lazarus announced that he is retiring March 31. Lazarus held the position for two years.
Council Chairwoman Monica Taylor said the Orange Street parking project will be completed by March 2024 and there is still a lot of lead poisoning occurring in the county.
Council held the first reading of an ordinance to put weight restrictions on four county bridges. The Mulford Bridge on South Avenue over Muckinpattis Creek in Glenolden will have a weight limit of 13 tons except 24 ton combinations; The Michigan Avenue Bridge over Little Crum Creek in Ridley Township, 12 tons; The Worral Bridge on Paper Mill Road over Darby Creek in Newtown Township, 15 tons except 20 ton cominations; and the Bonemill Bridge on Station Road over Chester Creek in Thornbury Township, 3 tons.
Council approved 25 items by consent including a contract with Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital to provide outpatient services for the treatment of tuberculosis for uninsured or under-insured clients; a contract with McCormick Taylor Inc. for construction inspection service for the replacement of County Bridge #94 on Manchester Road over Ridlge Creek for an amount not exceed $256,565.57; approval of $1,988,635 from the U.S. Department of Labor to support the development and administration of the Delaware County Prison-to-Community Workforce Development Initiative; and approval to enter into an agreement of sale with Briarcliffe Fire Co. for 767 Beech Ave., Darby Township for a county community resource center at price of $705,000.
During public comments Max Orenstein of Lansdowne congratulated the citizens who fought the Broomall’s Lake dam to save Glen Providence Park then asked council to redirect $45 million from building new juvenile prison to fund food for children. He said the federal government will be cutting funding for food for children.
Council appointed Larry Arata, Marjorie Lehigh, Dina Stonberg, Malcom Yates, Jacqueline Young, Dr. Kevin Caputo, Karen Barnes, Christine Rizzo, Dr. Philip Kim, Mark Lawson and Springfield Police Chief Joseph Daly to the Opioid Task Force with a term ending Feb. 29, 2024.
It appointed G. Alexander Cole to the Delaware County Authority with a term ending Jan. 1, 2024.
It appointed Elizabeth Derickson to the Delaware County Housing authority for a term ending Jan. 1, 2028.
It appointed Leona Torres to the Delaware County Redevelopment Authority to a term ending Oct. 31, 2024.
It appointed Frances Sheehan, Sean McIntosh and James Harper to the Economic Development Oversight Board with a term ending March 31, 2026; and reappointed Elaine Paul Schaefer to the Economic Development Oversight Board to a term ending March 31, 2024.
It appointed Paul Kahan, Twyla Simkins and Alan Derikson to the Heritage Commission with terms ending in September 2023, September 2024 and September 2025 respectively.
It appointed Barron Lacy (1st District) Trish McFarland (2nd District) Parker Snowe (5th District), Bridget O’Donnell (at large) and Kelly Johnson to the Delaware County Parks Board with terms ending March 2026; along with John McMullan to a term ending March 2025.
Delco Finalizes Deal With Broomall’s Lake County Club; Howard Lazurus To Retire As Executive Director
Speckin Recount Report Read To Delco Council— Delaware County (Pa) Council, last night, Feb. 15, heard read into the record the report by Erich Speckin concerning what he saw at a Jan. 12 non-binding recount of ballots in 3rd Precinct of Haverford’s 2nd Ward from the Nov. 8 election.
The recount was arraigned by Judge Barry Dozor after complaints came before him just after the election. It was hoped the recount would alleviate the complainants’ concerns of vote fraud.
Delco Director of Election Operations Jim Allen boasted, Jan. 18, that recounted ballots were 100-percent in compliance with the official results.
Speckin, however, of Speckin Forensics, one of the nation’s most respected experts in document analysis, found serious issues, the most significant being that the ballots had different shadings for the background and the red print. This would not have been the case if they all came from the same printer as Allen claims.
Speckin recommended an examination of a broader sampling of mail-in ballots.
Speckin also noted the county did not secure the ballots before the counting and unusual rules were instituted such as prohibiting the photographing of the ballots.
Reading the report was Joy Schwartz of Upper Darby. See below for the report.
Also speaking about election issues was Robert Mancini of Media who asked why the county is still fighting his right-to-know request for election documents despite state adjudicators having ruled in his favor.
Scott Thomas of Broomall decried the county’s decision to end the requirement of a public report from the Election Return Board
Kathy Buckley of Edgmont, a poll worker who was removed from the Wharf County Center day after the 2022 primary election after she called attention to a unexpected bagful of ballots, demanded an apology from Councilwoman Christine A. Reuther and County Solicitor William Martin who she said attacked her after she made an issue of it. She also wondered why it takes all night to count ballots when the machines can process the entire run in three hours.
A woman expressed concerns about the lack of transparency of the county voting machines. She said the public should be allowed to scrutinize the software along with the processes used to make the databases. This, strangely, is prohibited.
Dr. Patricia Bleasdale of Glen Mills said the county’s decision to end the report by the Return Board violates state law and promotes distrust. She said saw problems with voting machines while a poll watcher.
Carris Kocher of Glen Mills expressed concerns about data manipulation with regard to policy and about how the use of ZenCity artificial intelligence-based software could lead to invasions of privacy and targeting of citizens.
Mr, Simpson of Chester praised council for its dealings with his city.
Max Orenstein of Lansdowne expressed concern about the county’s proposed $40 million youth detention center despite a looming report on sexual abuse in the existing prison that he felt should be addressed first. He cited several ways how the county could better spend the money.
Colleen Kennedy of Upper Darby agreed with Orenstein and also brought up concerns regarding the George W. Hill Correctional Facility, the adult facility that the county took over in April.
Andre Simms of Chester also expressed opposition to a new $40 million juvenile’s detention center.
A woman took the podium and read headlines about suicides and other screwups regarding Hill since the county took it over. She also noted the bizarre exaggerations made regarding the feats of its new health department.
Bob Clements of Media praised those expressing concerns about the detention facilities and the county elections. He noted that he saw numerous problems at his polling place.
A Broomall man praised Council for building a new county park at the site of the former Don Guanella School in Marple but defended the right to object to the elections. An elderly man had earlier taken to the podium and sneered at the concerns being expressed.
Council unanimously approved — with Ms. Reuther abstaining due to a conflict — amendments to contracts between the Department of Human Services, Mental Health and Child Guidance Resource Centers.
Council also approved by consent 33 contracts, several of which also involved the Department of Human Services. Others included a re-design of the Dutton Mill Road Trail Head; the rehabilitation of County Bridge 157 spanning Chester Creek between Chester and Eddystone at a cost not to exceed $126,137; and electrical upgrades by AJM Electric Inc. at Rose Tree Park at a cost not to exceed $396,000.
Also approved was the purchase of 310 gross of American flags at $36,381.60 for Memorial Day, and a 2022 F-150 Ford pick-up truck from Fred Beans Ford of Wesrt Chester for the Criminal Investigation Department at a cost of $57,755.47.
They couldn’t find a Delaware County Ford dealership?
Councilman Richard Womack said some good things were said
Councilman Kevin Madden defended what county was doing with the prisons.
Councilwoman Reuther said election season 2023 has started.
Elaine Paul Schaefer said town halls regarding the Don Guanella park project are being held and that a Makers Market featuring local venders will be held this weekend at the Harrah’s Casino skating rink in Chester.
Delco GOP Endorsements For Council, DA and Judge — The Delaware County Republican Party has endorsed for County Council Jeff Jones, of Upper Darby; Upland Mayor Bill Dennon; and Joy Schwartz of Upper Darby who taught American History at Penn Wood High School until her retirement. Mrs. Schwartz also coached the school’s mock trial team which represented the county at the 2019 Pennsylvania Mock Trial State Tournament.
For district attorney, Beth Stephanie Miscichowski has been tapped to take on Soros-backed Jack Stollsteimer. She worked for the district attorney’s office in the 1990s before starting her own law practice which included work as a public defender.
For Common Pleas Court Judge, the party has endorsed Dawn Sutphin of Prospect Park, a law professor, who career has included clerking for federal judge William W. Caldwell; corporate law, private practice while raising her children, and then serving as an assistant public defender with the county from 2012 to 2021.
Delco Inflates Vax Shots By New Health Department By 5K% — Delaware County was saying its new $20 million health department had administered 172,000 Covid-19 vaccine doses as of the end of November.
Terry Tracy of Broad and Liberty investigated and could only confirm 1,149 jabs at a site in Yeadon.
When confronted, the county revised its claim to 2,364 county-wide.
That’s about 5,000 percent less than what it initially claimed.
The Health Department was created in April.
Now someone tell us how many incidents were logged during the month the 24/7 ballot drop boxes were active. There were diligently surveilled by solar-powered cameras all the while. Obviously, some incidents worth noting would have occurred, right?
Assuming they really were diligently surveilled.
Delco Inflates Vax Shots By New Health Department By 5K%
The council heard numerous complaints from environmental activists about the proposed Penn LNG liquid natural gas export terminal proposed for Chester.
We will give our green friends odds this is going to come to pass. The people running things may give caring looks when talking to their faces but they are laughing their asses off at them after they walk away.
Carris Kocher expressed disappointment that council will not respond to questions or engage with constituents, and expressed dissatisfaction with the changes in the code regarding elections, especially the omission of the Return Board report.
She also expressed concerns about ZenCity, the artificial intelligence program council is adopted to assist with (or make?) policy.
Joy also tells us that the Board of Elections failed to give the required three days notice Jan. 24 meeting. They announced it on Jan. 23, she says.
Delco Council Accused Of Ignoring Prison Crisis — Frank Kwaning, president of the Delaware County (Pa) Prison Employees Independent Union, told County Council, last night, Jan. 18, that things are bad at the prison and that the county has been ducking requests for meetings with the union to resolve matters.
The county took over the prison on April 6. It had been privately run since 1998.
Councilman Richard R. Womack, Jr. said he was unaware there had been an attempt to schedule a meeting and pledged to connect.
The drug crisis was also discussed along with a discussion on how to spend the $63 million settlement the county received as its share of a billion dollar settlement with pharmaceutical firms Cardinal Health, McKesson, and the Conshohocken-based Amerisource Bergen regarding their involvement in the wrongful distribution of opioids. The payout will be $3.5 million per year for 18 years.
It was noted that there were 1,584 overdose calls in Delco in 2022 which is believed to underrepresent the number of actual overdoses as people reported unconscious would not have been recorded as an overdose.
Councilwoman Christine A. Reuther came close to blaming racism for the crisis. Here’s a thought, stop mentioning skin color. Allocate resources according to the rate of occurrences. Nobody will object, and you end a point of division while advancing unity.
There was a first reading of an ordinance updating the county code regarding parks. It was noted that existing code was decades old and failed to account for things like drones. The new ordinance would require a permit for filming. Wonder if they are accounting for things like cell phones.
Also, 24 agenda items were approved by consent; Councilwoman Reuther was appointed to the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission for one-year term; David L. Walker, Claudia Cueto, William T. Smith, John Gillespie and Brian Razzi were appointed to the Delaware County Planning Commission for a term ending January 2027; and 16 property tax refunds were approved.
Delco Council Changes Election Code For Worse — Delaware County Council (Pa), tonight, Jan. 18, as expected, changed its code making elections less transparent and giving veto power to the ruling Democrats as to who the state-mandated minority party member of the three-member Board of Elections would be.
The new law allows the board to reject all members on a list of three names submitted by the Republicans for the seat and restart the process. Previously, they had to accept one of the names.
Councilwoman Christine A. Reuther justified it by saying the Republicans did it once when they were in control.
Council also ended the requirement of a public report from the Election Return a bi-partisan organization created to double-check election results. The reasoning seemed to be that they weren’t following the law anyway.
That, however, wasn’t the fault of the Return Board.
Those speaking out against the change included Chris Fabre of Upper Darby, Joy Schwartz of Upper Darby and Carris Kocher of Concord.
Gregory Stenstrom of Glen Mills noted that he and Leah Hoopes have three court cases still alive regarding election issues involving the county, and that the names of the County Council members along with the Board of Elections and the County Solicitor William Martin have been added to CV-2022-008091 which is before Delaware County Common Pleas Court.
He also noted that the Board of Elections has been fighting, rather strangely, multiple right-to-know requests for public records and that it has ignored orders to produce the information in at least one case.
Ms. Schwartz expressed concern over a plan to consolidate voting precincts hence weakening local control. She also asked about a report that the county sought to abolish precinct voting.
While Ms. Reuther admitted that Council thought some of county’s 428 precincts were too small and should be consolidated, others were thought too big and should be broken up.
She said only the state legislature could end precinct voting.
Fabre warned Council its actions will raise suspicions among the public as it is removing transparency.
Mrs. Kocher noted that the new ordinance appears to be at odds with state code especially regarding the elimination of the need for the return board to advertise its report.
Martin revealed that a voluntary hand recount was held in the 3rd Precinct of Haverford’s 2nd Ward to ease concerns of another group regarding November’s election.
James Allen, the county director of election operations, said it was watched by those making the request who were allowed within two feet of the ballots. The hand count was found to be 100 percent in compliance with the official results.
For other things that happened at the meeting — including the revelation that council is ignoring a crisis at the prison — see next story.
Delco Council Weakening Minority Input For Election Board — Delaware County Council (Pa) is expected to vote tomorrow, Jan. 18 on significant changes regarding the how elections are run.
The out-of-touch Democrats who run things reportedly plan to eliminate the requirement of a report from the County Return Board, a bi-partisan organization created to double-check election results and whose findings have been problematic to the official narrative.
The Democrats will also change the law to allow Council to reject the minority party’s nominee list for the Election Board in toto forcing them to submit a new list.
A minority party member is mandated by the state for the three-person board.