Pattye Benson

Community Matters

Tredyffrin Township Republican Committee Contribution Not Political?

I have kept busy with the moderation of many comments to my earlier posting, Question – Is it OK to Fund Township Budget With Political Party Contribution? This posting has opened a firestorm of dialogue which I think is really useful for the community. I thank the many readers for their comments and also thank local political committee members for offering their insights. In further review of last night’s Board of Supervisor meeting, I do have a few additional questions; any clarification from supervisors, fire company representatives, political committee members, residents, would be greatly appreciated.

  • Is the $23,200 check that was presented last night to the fire companies, an actual check that represents funds received to date?
  • Or does the check represent pledges made by individuals/businesses?
  • If the check represents pledges, what is the timeline for the fire companies to receive the money?
  • How does the individual/business know which fire company to make their check payable to?
  • Or is one fire company acting as the central clearing house and will in turn make the distribution of funds to the other 2 fire companies?
  • Will the distribution of funds be proportionate to each of the fire companies based on their individual budget requirements?
  • Do you think that the contributions from individuals/business for this Holiday Contribution Drive may affect what these donors will regularly give to the fire companies in 2010?
  • CT Alexander stated that he was Chair of the Tredyffrin Twp Republican Committee (TTRC) and that his party was giving $5K in ‘matching funds’; by attaching this statement to his organization’s gift, is this not viewed as a political contribution?
  • I would suggest that if the contribution from TTRC had not been a public TTRC contribution but rather given annonymously, than it would not be a political contribution.
  • Mr. Alexander stated that the TTRC contribution was in matching funds; what exactly does that mean? Matching to another contribution? If so, which one?
  • Supervisor Kampf read some of the names of businesses and individuals as public record. For clarification purposes, will he be providing the public with a complete list of all contributors and the amount of each contribution?
  • Based on last night’s meeting, is it an accurate statement to say that Supervisors Kampf, Lamina and Olson raised $18,200 in additional funds to the $5K contribution from the TTRC?

Sorry for so many questions. I’m one of those people who is a stickler for policy and procedure. I wrote my Masters of Public Administration thesis on government organizational theory so I am just trying to fit the pieces of the puzzle together from last night’s amazing financial offer to our local fire companies. Maybe the three supervisors who are responsible for arranging this generous fire company gift can shed some light on my questions. Supervisors Kampf, Lamina, Olson can you help me understand how this Holiday Contribution Drive is to work?

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  1. pattye, are you suggesting that the fire companies should reject the money and cut their budgets solely based on who coordinated raising the money?

    do the fire companies normally provide the public with a complete list of all contributors and the amount of each contribution? that would be a good way to check to see if those who gave are regular donors or not.

  2. “There probably should be an overarching organization called the TEFA (Tredyffrin Easttown Fire Association) that includes the Berywn, Paoli, Radnor, and any other company that provides services to either township. Politically, this could be a real force.”

    John: you raise an interesting possibility here. Instead of the BOS being run by the TTRC, could the puppet master come to be the TEFA? Are the other Township service departments allowed to organize politically? What’s the right way to assure a balance?

    Interesting benchmarks from neighboring townships in the news today:

    1. A 12% tax increase in Eastown. By my calculation (maybe someone could check?), the $50 sewer fee increase plus the flat property tax works out to be a 6.6% increase in total township taxes for the median home in Tredyffrin (assessed at $252,000?).

    2. Upper Merion police convert a contractual pay increase to comp time deferred over three years, in order to avoid a 6% (4 of 64) lay-off. I wonder if TESD teachers be open to a similar deal to avoid reducing programs (and the consequent teacher layoffs)? Would our School Board bargain hard enough? Would Tredyffrin township employees be open to similar contract adjustments in 2011 and forward?

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