The only two full-time elected positions in Wilkes-Barre City government are mayor and city controller, and there are no restrictions concerning a city hall elected public servant holding private sector jobs while they are in office. Some of our city elected do work elsewhere while serving, or are retired from a private sector job or a publicly funded position.
Category Archives: Wilkes-Barre Regional News
Not being a candidate for mayor now means that for me to help my city, I need to be able to discuss the ideas that I developed with those candidates who won the primary election. I promise to support the candidate who gives my ideas their best airing and who permits me to explain the advantages in as many meetings with them as it takes. So far, I regret to say, nobody has asked for a meeting with me. However, I do have a strong feeling that the requests will be coming rapidly, especially if George Brown chooses to launch a write-in campaign. A Brown write-in campaign may help the city more than it even may help George Brown.
The results of this election, in my humble opinion, suggest that either nobody in Wilkes-Barre is unhappy with its government and its handling of the issues, or that Magdalenski and Kelly have been flagged as dumb-ass buffoons for even trying to win a Democratic primary election as non-politicians in Wilkes-Barre. Thus, by reason of their insanity, a disease detected in time by the aligned voters, they were summarily identified and dealt with as only can happen in Wilkes-Barre politics.
Councilman and mayoral candidate Tony George means business. As mayor, he plans to apply to PennDOT for Multimodal Transportation Fund grants which will substantially improve and enhance business districts in various city neighborhoods. All of these grant funds encourage and recognize the leveraging of diverse grant funds to upgrade transportation, enhance communities, improve safety, revitalize neighborhoods and create jobs. Tony George expects that all City Departments will have an active role in this initiative including meeting in the neighborhoods with Business District partners and stakeholders to seek their guidance and input on how best to achieve these goals.
Kelly discussed his background and his plan to fight violent crime in the city. He also reiterated his call for Republicans to write him in during the primary election. Then, he took the time to remind City Council that they still have nine months left on their terms and that they should watch who they blame in the current crime blame game. Kelly asked “Is it fair they blame Mayor Leighton for everything . . . while Wilkes-Barre is blowing up from gangs and drugs and thugs? Where are their solutions?”
A few months ago we were notified about a complaint filed in the Luzerne County Court of Common Pleas in December 2006 by Little Flower Manor nursing home (located in Wilkes-Barre’s Heights section) against one Betty Jane Barrett and her sister, Suzanne MacNeely. Betty Jane was at the time, and remains to this day, the wife of Wilkes-Barre City councilman Bill Barrett.
We are clearly encountering major gang violence and so instead of saying we do not know what the problem is or whether it was drug related, we need to identify the problem post haste. Only with a quick ID can we can crush it before it crushes us. We have to see it that way, and we have to call it that way or none of our efforts to fight it can be successful. No unidentified problem has ever been solved.
Today, I call on the mayor to direct the Wilkes-Barre Police Department to immediately implement saturation patrols citywide, with a particular emphasis in the most troubled neighborhoods including South Wilkes-Barre, North End, and the Heights.
With National Work Zone Awareness Week occurring March 23-27, Acting PennDOT Secretary Leslie S. Richards today joined representatives from the Associated Pennsylvania Constructors (APC), the American Traffic Safety Services Organization (ATSSA), and various traffic-control companies for an event in Harrisburg calling on motorists to drive safely in work zones and be mindful of the people behind the cones.
Ryan Verdekal, 30, informed the Independent Gazette on Sunday, March 8, exclusively, that he will be ending his campaign for the office of mayor of the City of Wilkes-Barre, citing the entry of too many candidates seeking the Democratic Party nod. Verdekal announced his candidacy in January and said he has collected the requisite 100 Democratic signatures, but will not be handing in his petitions, claiming that he didn’t want to split what he termed the “honest vote.”