Lamina’s Characterization of Some Residents as ‘Gnats Nipping at His Heels’ is Troubling . . . Some Residents Claim They are ‘Victims of Taxation Without Representation’

In last week’s Main Line Suburban newspaper, BOS Chairman Lamina characterized those that disagree with him as ‘gnats nipping at his heels’.  Having been the target of his insulting remarks at the supervisors meeting and also in the paper, I was curious if residents would defend Lamina or find his governing style offensive as I had?  Guess I didn’t need to worry, as this week’s edition of the Main Line Suburban Life newspaper contained no resident letters of support.  Just the contrary, newspaper editor Tom Murray ran an entire section of letters under the heading, ”Some Tredyffrin residents not pleased with board chairman’s comments’.  Again, there are no letters in support of Lamina and, in fact one letter from Mr. and Mrs. Diamond of Malvern calls for Lamina to step down as chairman of the board. I suppose such a request would need to be generated from a majority of the other supervisors and, given that one of their own will appear on the ballot next week, such a suggestion would appear highly unlikely. 

Stepping back and looking at the situation, . . . where does all this leave those in the community that have questions of our elected officials?  Why should we bother risking public humiliation by asking questions? If like me you ask the questions, but are treated dismissively, bullied or called names (and still receive no answers) . . . why bother?  There has been a continuous theme among some of these supervisors since December; those that rule this township will remain in power and continue to ‘make the rules and break the rules’ as they see fit.  Disrespecting citizens can now be added to the list.

In reading through this week’s letters in the newspaper, the following letter caught my eye.  In the closing of his letter, Mr. Poppel of Devon states, ” When I hear the chairman of the Board of Supervisors and some of his colleagues dismiss the concerns and those of others who may not agree with him or who are members of the opposing party, then I must infer that we, too, are victims of taxation without representation. More to the point, it is clear from both Mr. Lamina’s comments and printed statements that he works not for the benefit of all the citizens of Tredyffrin but just those who support and agree with him. This is not the American way.”  As someone who really believes in this community and the importance of everyone’s voice, it truly saddens me that one individual’s [Lamina] words have the capacity to isolate and alienate some of Tredyffrin’s residents. 

To the Editor:

In his article in Main Line Suburban Life, Chairman of the Tredyffrin Board of Supervisors Bob Lamina attempts to answer critics and justify his behavior in several recent meetings of the board. His attempt falls flat.

In the most recent example, Pattye Benson, in a calm and well-reasoned presentation, questioned the apparent inconsistency between the treatment given by the supervisors and their legal counsel to an apparently unsolicited offer of services to the Historic Preservation Trust and the actively solicited cash contributions to make up a decrease in fire-company funding. In the former case, it was determined that there was a “pay-to-play” issue due to the presence of a sitting supervisor on the Trust’s board. In the latter it was considered OK, even though the solicitations were made by several of the supervisors using the township logo on some of the associated documents.

Instead of responding to the substance of this question, Mr. Lamina deflected the issue by praising the civic-mindedness of the donors and accusing questioners of not wanting the additional money to come in. He then fell back on one of his most common tactics, questioning the motives of the questioners. In his article he falls back on the common tactic of saying what a wonderful, well-governed place we live in without addressing concerns that could make it better.

Though I have not attended many supervisors’ meetings, I am struck by the fact that at several of those I have attended, Mr. Lamina uses his “bully pulpit” to act as a bully. He insults his questioners and attempts to marginalize their concerns. His claim in some instances that he speaks as an ordinary citizen doesn’t wash when he is making the comments from the dais.

Now, in Main Line Suburban Life, he has informed the citizens of Tredyffrin that if they don’t agree with him or question his and his colleagues’ actions, either at the meetings or in other media such as blogs (which he says he doesn’t read), they are simply “gnats” nipping at his heels.

Well, this particular gnat has been a resident and taxpayer in Tredyffrin for over 30 years. I’m not running for office. When I hear the chairman of the Board of Supervisors and some of his colleagues dismiss the concerns and those of others who may not agree with him or who are members of the opposing party, then I must infer that we, too, are victims of taxation without representation. More to the point, it is clear from both Mr. Lamina’s comments and printed statements that he works not for the benefit of all the citizens of Tredyffrin but just those who support and agree with him. This is not the American way.

Eugene H. Poppel, Devon

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  1. I will make a personal statement at the Primary on Tuesday. As a Republican, I am no longer willing to accept the old guard style of governing in this township. I saw the support letter in the paper for Kampf from the current supervisors (that is, all except JD) – a vote for Kampf on Tuesday is a vote of acceptance for this kind of government. One vote will not make a difference but I will have the satisfaction of knowing that I didn’t help send Kampf to Harrisburg.

    Anyone that thinks that we have a transparent, open system of government in this township, needs to wake up. No more status quo for me – starting Tuesday with the Primary.

    [Reply]

  2. FYI, Mr. Poppel ran as a Democrat for Inspector of Elections in 2009 for Tredyffrin Mid-6.

    [Reply]

    Moderate Republican Reply:

    It shouldn’t make any difference what your party is. Recently I saw a letter to the editor which do not indicate that the writer is a member of the TTRC (ie Ed Sweeney a couple of weeks ago).

    [Reply]

    Vallon Reply:

    Thank you for further proving Mr. Poppel’s point…

    “dismiss the concerns and those of others who may not agree with him or who are members of the opposing party”

    Close-minded much?

    [Reply]

    Howard in Daylesford Reply:

    so what?

    [Reply]

    Malvern Republican Reply:

    Mike – What is your point? Do you disagree with the substance, or any portion of Mr. Poppel’s letter? Do you approve of the actions of Mr. Lamina in this regard? Do you approve and support the controversial actions of Messrs. Kampf, Lamina, and Olsen in the last few months?

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    Mike in Berwyn Reply:

    Mine is simply an observation. I’m not suggesting that Mr. Poppel should have disclosed his affiliation.

    However, in the last 6 months the Suburban has printed at least 3 letters to the editor from Kathleen Keohane, who was the head of communications for the Tredyffrin Democrats – in my view, that affiliation should be disclosed by her.

    To your question, I approve of some of KOL’s actions and disapprove of others – unlike some on this board, I judge their actions on a case-by-case basis.

    [Reply]

    Sitting in the shadows Reply:

    Overstepping there Mike. “Unlike some” is a bit of a reach — while there is general anger towards OLK and their governing in many of the posters here, I don’t think it’s fair to suggest they do not judge on a case by case basis. I think what is fair to say is that the BOS does not judge Democrats on a case by case basis…gnats and all. I’m a republican and feel very badly that people we elected as representatives have so little respect for their oponents. I think THAT is what people have concluded….and with good reason.

    Kathleen Keohane Reply:

    Mike, I don’t know where you get your information, but I am not and never have been the “head of communications” for the TTDEMS.

    I am a Democratic committeeperson and a district coordinator.

    I write letters based on my own opinions- not those of my party. And those letters reflect my strong objections to the manner in which Chairman Lamina as head of the Block of Four has conducted the township’s business.

    Mr. Lamina has chosen to act as bully in charge, marginalizing anyone who does not agree with him. While his behavior may reflect the dysfunction of the larger political landscape, it is still appalling.

    I believe I am not alone in my views.

    Malvern Republican Reply:

    Mike – So, you shared an observation, and then responded that you don’t believe the author should’ve disclosed the affiliation you felt so compelled to share – and then you commit that you like some LOK actions and not others…

    I do not think that your purpose was intended to be as irrelevant as you say it was. While I do not always agree with your position, your comments are usually more deliberate and thoughtful than that.

    With respect to your comments re Ms. Keohane – why do you bring her letters into this thread completely out of the blue? Most people who are paying any attention to politics locally know who she is, and who she is affiliated with. None of that makes any difference really, you either agree with her or you don’t… are you suggesting she should be dismissed based upon her affiliation?? That sounds familiar. I for one agree with Kathleen’s comments on these LOK political issues.

    What is your point re “some on this board”. Was someone debating or discussing the merits of case by case consideration? Are you suggesting that Mr. Poppel, or any of the other letter writers from today’s paper were guilty of being unfair? Again, I do not follow your point.

    LOK should truly be commended for bringing together so many democrats, republicans, and independents on a local issue. Congrats on the bipartisan disappointment and distrust of themselves that they have created.

  3. Watching recent board meetings and seeing some of the online posts, I can’t help but agree with Lamina’s gnat reference. I feel there are some people who are making this ‘personal.’ He still has my support and if anything, I’m feeling bad for him as I imagine trying to do my job hand despite hen pecking around me.

    [Reply]

  4. Mike, so what difference does it make if Mr. Poppel ran as a Democrat for Inspector of Elections? All residents should be concerned when our elected officials dismiss others and act inappropriately.
    It is my understanding that most polling places are desperately in need of volunteers to oversee voting. (Truly a thankless but important job.) By the way, I have worked at a number of polls, tabulating votes – as a Republican. It didn’t influence my counts and it certainly didn’t influence my disgust at the behavior of Supervisors Lamina, Kampf and Olson.

    [Reply]

  5. Nelly, you are too funny!!

    Poor little Mr. Lamina, he has no one to blame but himself for this mess. If he would have given answers instead of going on the attack, it would have been end of story!!!

    [Reply]

    freddy Reply:

    even funnier is your assertion that lamina’s ‘answers’ would have ended anything.

    [Reply]

    Sitting in the shadows Reply:

    i’m glad you put answers in quotations — because at least I know you are defending him along party lines and not on substance. he gave no answers….but I assume that had he answered why Pitcairn was wrong and Comcast was okay, it would likely have caused some consternation about his application of logic and reason.
    And for you to suggest that anything John Petersen says on this blog is even mildly comparable to something the chair of the BOS says in print in the local paper is beyond reason….John is a gnat for the most part — occasionally equipped with a stinger — but Lamina has a governing majority to do whatever he chooses. He has no impulse control — plain and simple — and perhaps he and JP should consider some counseling to learn how to manage that….but there is little harm and no foul in what JP mutters….but a great deal of disrespect and angst by what BL proclaims from his throne.

    [Reply]

    freddy Reply:

    obviously, you and your family have not been personally affected by the atrocities of the 3rd reich or you would not claim that likening the BOS’s actions to nazism is not harmful or disrespectful.

  6. a sitting supervisor compares some of his political opponents to gnats and there is an uproar.

    a former supervisor compares some of his political opponents to nazis and there is silence and acceptance.

    [Reply]

  7. Mike
    Not sure what your point was in making the identification — assume it was meant to give us a broader understanding of his comments along party lines — but if I were a dem in this community, Lamina’s comments certainly would concern me. As a Republican, they anger me — because the use of party lines in local governing is useless — and wrong. Running as a member of a party is an organizational tool — but on a board with all 7 members being of the same party, there is absolutely no reason to allow party to influence or differentiate. I don’t recall if you weighed in on the Benson comments that drew fire here — but as a lifelong township resident and republican, I certainly felt her question was not only valid — but deserved an answer. I still do not see any answer to the “distinction without a difference” relating to the pay to play implications of the Pitcairn services and the fire solicitation and donations. I do not fault the outcome of the fire solicitation, but I truly believe the Pitcairn “decision” was probably to reinforce the lack of support that the OLK supervisors and their cronies had all along for the Jones Log Barn. Accepting that ground work would have given that project a real foundation….and rather than admit they were opposed to it, they obstructed the process (it’s no longer happening where Pitcairn had offered to do the work). So — what would be so hard about stepping up and answering Pattye’s question — except that it calls into question the general attitude of our supervisors to make decisions and reach conclusions without scrutiny. Lamina could have used his article to explain his understanding of the difference — except I don’t think there is an explanation that would hold water. So instead he mocked the question….
    Regardless of party affiliation, should we really accept that attitude from anyone who gets to walk around and say they are Chair of our Township BOS?

    [Reply]

  8. I guess the thing that smacks of politics here more than anything is the way so many comments take Kampf to task for comments Lamina made.

    Lamina was wrong. In fact, he was stupid. Beat him up for it, he deserves it.

    Things like this didn’t happen when Kampf was Chairman — it changed when Lamina got that seat.

    I know a bunch of people will say “look at the firefighter money” but that is a policy debate that a lot of residents agreed with in principle (cut spending across the board (the fire cos much less) to protect all taxpayers. It still has nothing to do with Lamina’s arrogance, belligerence or whatever else you want to call it.

    Focus on the person who is messing up and stop playing politics by trying to tie others to it.

    [Reply]

    Mike in Berwyn Reply:

    Excellent point, From the West.

    [Reply]

  9. Sitting in the Shadows…

    You say “I still do not see any answer to the “distinction without a difference” relating to the pay to play implications of the Pitcairn services and the fire solicitation and donations. I do not fault the outcome of the fire solicitation, but I truly believe the Pitcairn “decision” was probably to reinforce the lack of support that the OLK supervisors and their cronies had all along for the Jones Log Barn”

    I watched the YouTube videos Pattye posted. The Supervisors were told by their solicitor they HAD TO turn down the offer from Pitcairn. Right or wrong that was the legal advise of the person who is paid to give it to them. If they didn’t follow that advise, what would you have said then?

    To take their vote on Pitcairn and stretch it to they didn’t really support Jones Barn is both a reach and unfair.

    [Reply]

    Pattye Benson Reply:

    As president of the Tredyffrin Historic Preservation Trust for a very long time, I would suggest that I understand the Pitcairn/BOS history quite well, having lived through it. I have repeatedly said, following the rules of the Home Rule Charter, Mr. Hogan probably did advise the supervisors correctly on the Pitcairn decision. The township could not be caught in a situation where there was any perception of a ‘pay-to-play’. Sure it was hard to accept that the Trust was forced in to declining a $50K offer — which is exactly why I needed to understand what made the supervisors solicitation so different (and why I attempted to ask the question).

    Perhaps if the Township Solicitor had been given the same opportunity to ‘weigh-in’ on Lamina, Kampf & Olson’s fundraising plan for the fire company BEFORE they solicited, Mr. Hogan would have advised similarily. If it was wrong for the Trust/Pitcairn situation (because Judy DiFilippo was a supervisor and Trust Board member) than I absolutely believe that the same perception of ‘pay-to-play’ exists with supervisors soliciting businesses that have contracts with the township (ex. Comcast). However, the more ‘delicate’ question (that places Mr. Hogan in a rather awkward situation) is that Mr. Hogan’s own law firm (Lamb McErlane) was listed by Kampf as a contributor. A tremendous amount of money (anyone have a clue what that $ amount per year is?) is spent on legal fees to Lamb McErlane each year – so exactly how would you suppose that firm should have responded when solicited by Lamina, Kampf & Olson? To be clear, the solicitor works for the township and therefore can only advise the BOS — but cannot require them take his advice.

    So, no . . . I did not receive an answer to my question, which was why the same set of rules were not applied in the 2 situations. I know that you don’t want to have Kampf drawn in to the Lamina discussion. But that’s a difficult split because the basis for Lamina’s remarks has to do with the fire funding and the cardboard check, which included Kampf and Olson, in addition to Lamina. I’ll accept that Kampf probably would not want to call people ‘gnats’ and hope to receive their vote in November (should he win the Primary)

    [Reply]

    chet Reply:

    Pattye, you put the stink before the horse. Maybe the law firm was happy to contribute to the fund on a good will basis, and in support of the community they work for? You see, I would agree that it would look fishy if they didn’t contribute, then were booted out of their position by this board. But that is a leap into a future that won’t now happen. Just another way of looking at it. I mean, why deprive the law firm from donating, even if it looks to SOME as pay to play? I appreciate their generosity. Let’s hit them up for more!!!

    [Reply]

  10. Sitting…:

    “I don’t think it’s fair to suggest they do not judge on a case by case basis.” I suggest you look over the posts of the past six months – there are some here who have never said a single positive thing about LOK and to suggest that part of some’s criticism is not politically motivated is incredibly naive.

    That said, I do not agree with some of LOK’s demeanor at meetings, especially Mr. Lamina’s recent handling of Pattye’s question. They sometimes present an arrogance that is absolutely counterproductive. I don’t agree with every decision they’ve made – their handling of the fire/fireworks issue was clumsy, at best. However, the quibble most have is with roughly $25,000 in a $30 MILLION Township budget.
    In my view, the overall handling of the 2010 budget challenge was excellent – the BAWG worked extremely hard with the Administration and BOS to identify savings and arrive at a budget that maintained service levels in a fiscally sound way. Try getting some here to admit THAT.

    [Reply]

    Malvern Republican Reply:

    Mike – Assuming I agree with your position that the “overall handling of the 2010 budget challenge was excellent.” Are you suggesting that a job well done on the budget excuses or absolves “an arrogance that is absolutely counterproductive,” or the handling of another issue that “was clumsy, at best”, etc. etc.?

    Competency, proficiency, diligence, courtesy, honorability, honesty. These are not mutually exclusive qualities. We don’t need to excuse a bad act simply because of the presence of good act – that isn’t the way it works.

    Plenty of kudos are given out on this blog. Some to democrats, some to republicans, some to individuals and to groups that have no single, or apparent political affiliation.

    To blame “political motivation” for the condemnation of LOK and their actions is disingenuous and inaccurate. If this were all “politically motivated” why wouldn’t the criticism be directed at the entire republican TTBOS?

    [Reply]

    Mike in Berwyn Reply:

    Malvern Republican:

    I am not suggesting that a successful budget resolution excuses poor behavior, merely that credit should be given for deeds well done.

    You’re right, plenty of kudos are given out on this blog but I stand by my assertion that “there are SOME here who have never said a single positive thing about LOK and to suggest that PART of SOME’S criticism is not politically motivated is incredibly naive.”

    [Reply]

    Malvern Republican Reply:

    Mike –

    With respect to your statement, which you assert needs to be interpreted in it’s most specific and narrowest context – I agree that the statement is very likely correct if the emphasis is kept on “SOME”.

    Given the purportedly very narrow intent of your post, I do not see what value it offers to any of this dialog. You have simply stated the obvious. Your fact is no more insightful than for someone to say that ‘there are some LOK supporters here who will not acknowledge or accept that LOK have been clumsy and arrogant in the handling of some recent township matters – and their support of LOK must be politically motivated…’ Not exactly a revelation either.

    As with your Mr. Poppel comment, I do not think that your posts were intended to be as narrow and irrelevant as you now assert. Your posts were plainly intended to be defensive of LOK, or to confuse the issue.

    It looks to me as if your posts on this thread are as politically motivated as any on the site…

  11. Thanks Mike. Articulately expressed — and an answer to my questions (something Mr. Lamina could learn from). Pattye — you are too kind to view the Pitcairn decision through such a lens — the solicitor works at the pleasure of the chair and history or no, I can assure you his decision was reached after consultation…and direction. To suggest that the paper check took place without his input (since he responded to the donation solicitation himself) is not necessary — but it is all small potatoes in considering the whole process.

    Freddy — I give up on you. Could I possibly get you to accept that Nazi references are lazy ones…? It was a little too easy for JP to make the leap from KAMPF to NAZI…so ignore it.

    [Reply]

    freddy Reply:

    to ignore it is to condone it.

    [Reply]

    Mike in Berwyn Reply:

    Malvern Republican:

    If you look back, my question was with Sitting in the shadows’ assertion on 5/12 that essentially everyone judges LOK on a case-by-case basis – I did not agree with that. In response, in his/her response later that day, Sitting… graciously acknowledged my point.

    As for disclosure of affiliation, it is my opinion that if you are an elected official or hold a leadership position in a political party, that affiliation should be disclosed in a Letter to the Editor in The Suburban. BTW, contrary to your assertion, while many on this blog may know the local political players (i.e. Kathleen Keohane), I would contend that many reading the Letters to the Editor do not.

    Finally, I do not claim to be apolitical. While I think of myself as fair-minded, I have been a registered Republican for 35 years and share most of their views, though I have never served any party function. That said, I am not comfortable with some of the recent demeanor we’ve seen from some of Supervisors, both the Republicans and the Democrat.

    [Reply]

    Malvern Republican Reply:

    Mike – Why would anyone need to know the author’s political affiliation in order to judge the merit and validity of their Letter to the Editor?

    [Reply]

    Mike in Berwyn Reply:

    I’m not suggesting that every letter writer must disclose their party registration, rather I am in favor of disclosure of elected officials and those in party leadership positions. Many already do so in The Suburban. If you review the letters to the editor in many newspapers, you often see such disclosures. For example, in today’s Wall Street Journal, there is a letter discussing a Stanford study and the letterwriter discloses his affiliation to Stanford.

    I happen to think it’s good policy – you apparently disagree, which is fine.

    Malvern Republican Reply:

    To be clear, I don’t disagree with disclosure, nor do i think it is bad policy. I do disagree that anyone’s opinion should be summarily dismissed on the basis of political affiliation, which is where i think you wanted to go with your post of Mr. Poppel’s unsuccessful candidacy and political affiliation… By your own admission you said later you didn’t feel he should have disclosed, yet you felt such urgency to share your simple observation and ‘out’ him.

    Then you brought Ms. Keohane, and her letters from weeks and months ago, into the discussion – seemingly out of the blue.

    Absent an explanation, it appears to me that many of your posts here recently were very much politically motivated, and largely dismissive of contrary opinion purely on the basis of political affiliation.

    Mike in Berwyn Reply:

    Not sure where I said that “anyone’s opinion should be summarily dismissed on the basis of political affiliation”?

    As for Mr. Poppel, I discovered today that he is listed by the Tredyffrin Township Democratic Party as its Secretary and a member of its Executive Committee. His letter appeared in The Suburban and was the subject of Pattye’s original post, without disclosure of his affiliation (I have no idea whether Pattye knew of his affiliation). Maybe the reason Mr Poppel and Ms. Keohane do not disclose their affiliation is because it is part of an orchestrated, politically motivated campaign to discredit Republican officials and they know that disclosure reduces their credibility?

    Malvern Republican Reply:

    I did not say that you said that “anyone’s opinion should be summarily dismissed on the basis of political affiliation”. What I said before, and will say again, is that based upon your lack of providing a reasonable and believable explanation for your Poppel post, I suspect that the veiled intent of your post was to suggest we dismiss Mr. Poppel’s criticism based purely upon his past candidacy as a Democrat. You didn’t say it outright, but the intent appears the same.

    “An orchestrated, politically motivated campaign to discredit Republican officials”……Wow… I doubt it highly, but even if it was a grand democrat plan, the fact remains that these issues, of which there has been BIPARTISAN criticism, were problems created by LOK themselves, not the democrats. Furthermore, why would this “orchestrated democrat campaign” be focused only on LOK, when John D’s term expires during the same cycle as LOK, and his is a seat that has been previously held by a democrat?? Maybe all of the criticism is simply criticism by citizens of poor decisions and bad government by SOME of our elected officials?? That sounds more plausible to me.

    It is truly a shame that so many people seem to subscribe to the democrat conspiracy theory whenever LOK are criticized, and in doing so completely miss the learning opportunity that there are a good many “fair-minded” people here (from every party) who find the repeated abuses of power by LOK disturbing.

    Eugene H Poppel Reply:

    I did not mention my party affiliation because I didn’t think it was relevant to the discussion. As Mike in Berwyn discovered, it wasn’t difficult to find out, probably through a quick Google browse.

    My theme was, as mentioned in my conclusion, that opinions that disagree with Mr. Lamina tend to be dismissed or marginalized, especially (though I did not say so) those from Democrats.

    Apparently, Mike in Berwyn has a similar approach, since he seems to be more concerned with my party affiliation and political activities than he is with the substance of my letter to the editor. In fact, at no time in Mr. Lamina’s response in the public question portion of the Supervisors’ meeting was there a clear answer to Pattye’s original question about the different handling of the donation in services to the Log Barn and the cash solicitation for the fire companies. In fact, I think I understood the essence of his answer, other than his attack on Pattye, as “it’s different because we say it’s different.”

  12. Pattye —

    I have no issue with your question re: the fire company fundraising. I do not know if Mr. Hogan ever did or has yet to offer advise or some opinion on that effort.

    All I was trying to point out was the Supervisors followed his advise on the Pittcairn occasion.

    As for Kampf calling people “gnats,” my opinion is that I never saw any evidence that he would do this regardless of whether he was running for office or not.

    It didn’t happen during his Chairmanship (vs. Lamina’s) and that is all I have to base it upon.

    [Reply]

  13. Sitting in the Shadows…

    If your advise is to “ignore” John Petersen comparing people to the Nazi regime, I have no idea how you can be so upset over someone calling people “gnats”

    Neither is acceptable, but one is simply eggregious and unacceptable — and it isn’t the gnats comment.

    When you make arguments like ignore it on such hideous statments but defend others, you lose credible on all other comments.

    [Reply]

    Sitting in the Shadows Reply:

    Not upset — annoyed that someone with a title and a perceived authority to represent me and speak for me calls constituents gnats….and that someone like you who clearly knows the difference between a citizen Petersen and a Supervisor Lamina would pretend their comments belonged in the same debate.

    [Reply]

    freddy Reply:

    sitting – glad to see at least that you agree with lamina’s general sentiment….”John is a gnat for the most part”

    i see JP is still marginalizing the atrocities of the nazi regime by trying to justify his nazi comparison again.

    [Reply]

    freddy Reply:

    fyi pattye, i didnt write the message may13th at 5:35pm.

    Pattye Benson Reply:

    I do not understand how someone could use your email address; email addresses are not posted. However, I deleted the comment listed with your name posted at 5:35 PM.

    freddy Reply:

    i communicated with JP with the same email address that I list under the ‘mail (will not be published)’ field when i post to this site. JP is the only person who knows that email address, and, the only person in the world (besides you) that knows that ‘freddy’ uses that email address. its that simple.
    just goes to show how dishonest JP is.

    freddy Reply:

    logical flaws? are you going to back that up with any specifics or just try and brush it off like you normally do?
    you have no idea what email address i use?
    are you saying that you are too stupid to assume that i would use the same email address to post to this board as i did to communicate with you? if that is the case, then i guess we agree on something for once.
    lets ask pattye, did the post from 5:35PM as freddy use the same email address as i used to post this message and all other messages as freddy?
    if that is the case, then please enlighten me as to who else could have possibly done that john? maybe someone just ‘guessed’ at the address?
    no john, you are the only person in the world besides pattye that knows freddy’s email address.
    for you to even utter the phrase ‘get over yourself’ is so laughable!

    Pattye Benson Reply:

    freddy – I do not understand. I checked and the email address is the same for the 5:35 PM post as this 10:20 AM post. I do not give out email addresses of anyone who posts on Community Matters.

    freddy Reply:

    that is my point pattye. john petersen is the only person in the world (besides you and me) that knows what freddy’s email address is.
    JP also knows that if he wants to post a message as ‘freddy’, he would need to use the same email address that ‘freddy’ uses to post messages so that you do not notice that it is a fraud.
    i know that you did not give out my email address. i contacted JP with that email address, and through our discussions, it was revealed that i was posting as ‘freddy’ on the blog.
    JP is the only person who could possibly associate that email address with the ‘freddy’ persona on this blog.
    if the email addresses for the bogus message and the legitimate message is the same, then john petersen has been exposed for the liar that he is.
    well john? i’m still waiting for the ‘logical flaws’ you claim to be able to count up…

    freddy Reply:

    are you insinuating that i would use your email address to post messages as you?don’t worry john, im not a dishonest fraud like you. your persona is safe.
    still waiting for the numerous ‘logical flaws’ you claim… i thought a quick thinking lawyer would be able to come up with something better than ‘you are a liar so i didnt do it’.
    should we ask pattye to compare ip addresses or your posts, my posts and the bogus post? or, are you using a proxy to cover your tracks?

    what can anyone expect from someone who minimizes murderous genocidal regimes.

    freddy Reply:

    i think your lack of substantive reply speaks volumes.
    was this all a ploy to try and reveal my identity?

  14. Pattye —

    You are right, the solicitor is there to advise and does not have to be listened to.

    That said, I can’t think of any instances where the Tredyffrin BOS (regardless of its makeup) has gone against the advice of counsel (including Mr. Hogan and other substitutes).

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  15. It might be interesting to know just how many Fire Companies the law firm contributed to. Did every volunteer fire company serving members of the firm get a similar donation form Lamb McErlane or just where they are the township solicitor….

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  16. It’s so interesting to see the bias in most responses on this blog. From the West is clearly interested in defending Warren Kampf in every way she can – working hard to differentiate him from his buddy, Bob. Ironically, many of the nasty, defensive remarks the Chairman has made in recent months can be explained in part by his efforts to protect and support Kampf in his election bid.

    If not raising taxes is your highest priority – no matter how achieved- then you justify much of what has been done by this board and those who just left it to be admirable.

    But if you find at least some of their actions to be less than trustworthy, driven by partisan concerns ( Kampf’s election), and backroom agreements (SDGC), and openly entwined with the local Republican Party for their mutual benefit ( that made-for-TV cardboard check moment), then you believe there is much to be unhappy about..

    Speaking as a gnat, I believe Mr. Lamina and his voting block need to be kept on notice that this community is watching carefully all of the board’s activities. But the only satisfactory solution to these bimonthly reality shows will have to wait until November of 2011.

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    Chet Reply:

    Gnat, I am sure they know all about you. Weak threat. “we’ll be watching”.. No kidding..

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    Gnat...ITK Reply:

    Gee, Chet. Thanks for the reality check.

    I did not intend to be threatening. I was just making a statement that Tredyffrin residents need to be watching and speaking out. As citizens, that is all we can do until the next local election. Or else backroom deals and cronyism will continue unnoticed.

    Like a lot of residents, I have not always paid close attention to local government. Having paid much higher property taxes in other states, I had no complaints living in Tredyffrin. I believe Tredyffrin has a very competent, hard-working township manager and that by and large, our tax dollars have not been wasted.

    But we will only get what we pay for. And essential services should be adequately funded. What is adequate funding and how will we pay for it? That’s what we should be focused on. Not the quirky personalities of some of our supervisors.

    It’s just that they’ve given us many reasons not to trust them. Thankfully, not all of them, but four votes is all it has taken to make a mess of things.

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  17. Kathleen:

    A few months ago, TTDEMS’ website had you listed as such.

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    Kathleen Keohane Reply:

    Mike,

    No way. Never happened. I do contribute to our newsletter, the FLASH, and for several years (2007-8) was its editor. ( But no, I was not Mr. T! )

    Currently, Ted Patterson is our Communications Chair, appointed in January 2010. Before that, there was no one acting in that role.

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  18. Nasty nasty… why are opponents of KLO so hung up on nasty? Marc Defilciamtonio was one of the nastest guys I ever knew of… and a Democrat!!! wow…c’mon ladies and gentlemen… its hot in the kitchen.. Wait… I hear barbra in the backround… “feelings……… Yes, I like my taxes low… I like good value for what I pay. And I think I get it in tredyffrin. Do I like everything about the Board all the time? No I don’t.. Can Democrats say the same, about, say, President Obama? Charlie Rangel? The late, great John Murtha? Will never hear that.. This is really getting old. maybe we can talk about substance over style…

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    Township Reader Reply:

    Chet — the style IS the substance when it comes to elections. The most recent mailer from Mr. Kampf says he voted no to the sewer increase…and says Mr. Buckwalter voted yes.
    Now — is that substance or style? Mr. Kampf voted “no” in his role as Chairman by casting his vote last after his then potential opponent Judy D had voted yes — and secured the majority to increase the fees.

    Yes — that’s politics. I think we would all love it if people ran on substance — but they turn substance into style when they twist the reality to their purpose — which makes you naturally question ethics and morality when the references in a 23rd hour campaign mailer are so fuzzy.

    I have known and supported Warren Kampf for many, many years. I hesitate now because I see him as a person motivated entirely by political expedience…and maybe I am earnest enough to want to vote for the principles and positions — and not be influenced or coaxed by the posturing.

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    chet Reply:

    Unfortunately, most politicians are motivated by “political expedience” . Have you been paying attention to national politics? This whole presidency is motivated by political expedience… Then again, it may be difficult to separate political expedience from one’s true ideologies. I think they run together. Whatever the truth is, the proof is in the pudding, how they govern, and how the majority of the electorate view their governing. Then we vote.

    Lawyers are great at “twisting” the substance. If they didn’t do that, then there would be less “injured” commercials, and less lawyers sucking the lifeblood out of our economy, in tandem with our government. Seems like everyone is out for their own. I have often asked.. ” where is the honest man or woman?” Every so often, one may arise, like a phoenix from the ash heap of cynicism. Still waiting… ( I know.. ken. maybe.. but first he has to get elected.) Yes, I am cynical, but for me it cuts across both parties. thanks.

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  19. To a Gnat in the Know – Bravo. Well said and worth preserving. I appreciate your candor and your accuracy – and you limited the scope of your assessment and didn’t go overboard.

    To Freddy and FTW: Help me to understand your rationale please.
    John Petersen – a “former supervisor” was appointed to the position in October 2005 by the same OLK folk he criticizes now. He ran for election the very next month and lost to Paul Drucker. At no time was he ever an elected supervisor. He had no public affirmation of his position. What he says on this blog is about as meaningful as what anyone else says….and it’s on this blog. To debate its merits or its comparability to Lamina is not even reasonable.

    Bob Lamina is an elected supervisor – serving his 3rd term (4th) – and is the elected Chair of the BOS. He is a FACE of Tredyffrin township in this region. His open letter in a publication like the Suburban/Main Line paper is a public document that reflects on our community. The recent public editorials about ethics problems in Tredyffrin, his Fireworks rant earlier in the year, his “modified non-apology” about the SDGC all reflect on us.

    SO – to ignore is not to condone when it comes to JP’s Nazi reference. But it’s falling for the “if it doesn’t fit, you must acquit” OJ Glove defense because the policeman who found the glove used the N word. To elevate JP’s comments to any level of comparability to RL’s is hyperbole at best, and nonsense in the long run.

    You can certainly defend WK – who was part of the group who appointed Petersen I might add – because it was Lamina who uttered these words. He did it, of course, to deflect some attention from the Kampf rant at the earlier meeting. Lamina and Petersen struggle with impulse control – but they are not at the same level and their comments are not remotely related to each other. This is an old political tool – deflect criticism by mocking or trying to diminish the source of the criticism. Lamina is a bad politician. He should not be able to write a diatribe and sign his name along with his title – but he is only a citizen when he chooses to be (his rules). Petersen is ALWAYS a citizen. So enough.

    By the way – because it makes me crazy and makes the bloggers seem uneducated: I assume because of its repeated use that it is not a typo:

    The VERB is ADVISE.
    The NOUN is ADVICE.

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  20. Response to a Warren Kampf Attack Mailer
    I just received a mailer from my opponent, Warren Kampf, attacking a post I wrote August 4th 2008. I stand by what I wrote in Alcoholic Drink Tax & Maybe a City Charter.

    Warren’s mailer took the following from my post: “Maybe it is time for Phoenixville to look into a drink tax what with the many, many taverns, pubs and bars opening up in our downtown.”

    Warren then states “Two times – in 2010 and in 2008 – (Ken) supported a new “drink tax” in Phoenixville – a tax that would hurt the revitalization of his community.”

    Unfortunately, Warren couldn’t be more deceptive in his attack as he left out the rest of what I wrote.

    “This would provide the consistent funding source needed to continue to revitalize and promote the downtown with the possibility of providing some property tax relief for our residents. At least those who enjoy our downtown but don’t live here, would help contribute financially to the added expenses of sustaining our growth.”

    Warren also failed to inform that Phoenixville property owners were about to be put on the hook to the tune of $625,000 for 5 years if Council passed funding for the services of the CDC. The amount would equate to almost a 10% tax increase before the budget even got underway for 2009.

    It should be noted that the funding did pass that August but was cut in half for the 2010 budget.

    Links: http://www.BuckwalterForPA.com

    [Reply]

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