Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Home rule in Luzerne County

Jennifer Learn-Andes has a story in TL today that asks the members of the last study commission if they think that another one is needed. They all said yes but don't expect me to that again. The plan that was voted down in 2003 was actually pretty good. It would have restructured the county government into a sort of Mayor/Council arrangement. The DA and Controller would still be elected as well as the Judges. But the row offices would become appointed positions which makes sense to me as elections for Prothonotary or Register of Wills are a waste of time. They are not policy positions and it's hard to judge who would be better at filing forms. And in this day of high tech medicine the Coroner should be hired based on his/her qualifications. There is no Democratic or Republican way to do an autopsy.

Both parties opposed the plan with Democrats saying things are fine the way they are because they win most of the elections but the Republicans reason was downright funny. They were afraid they would lose the only office they are guaranteed to win, minority commissioner.


Bernie O'Hare said...


The advanatage of Home Rule is that ideally, it brings government closer to the people, especially w/ provisions for initiative and referendum.

The drawback is that it is still unclear just how far Home Rule governments can go. Where does the state end and the county begin? Charter provisions can be open to different interpretations.

All in all, I'd say it works.

pissed off patricia said...

A repub autopsy would be just look at the body and guess what happened.
A dem autopsy would take three days to plan it, four days to decide where to start and another week doing the actual operation.

Bill Fitz said...

i think the GOP should support this. First if there are council members the GOP would win a seat on the back mountian and be competative in lower luzerne and the west side.
I think the county council should have a an even number of districts with 3 atlarge members one minorority. Also the GOP would have a much better chance to win one race for county exuctive than two spots for commissoner.

danny said...

Bill, I love ya, but it isn't "Lower" Luzerne Cty. It's Southern. It can't be "lower" because it's at a higher elevation.

I digress... I was involved in the ultimately successful Charter NO campaign, and I had a number of problems with the charter that was submitted, not with the idea of home rule here in Luzerne County. If a commission is sought again, I might even run for a spot on it.

Bill Fitz said...

danny i dont know enough about the details of the commsiions but we can all agree on this
Prontonary, Clerk of courts, wills, deeds and coroner, maybe even sheriff should no longer be elected positions
Also to me it seems treasuer and controller are somewat redudant, look at PA all the treasure does is sheriff's sales, because all f the good stuff is done by the Auditor general who is basiocally a controller
on southern Luzeren i just go with what i hear but I am informed by the "northern media" instead of the standard sqeaker

forrest gump said...

Hey, did you see where the Executive committee of the Scranton Republican party met for 45 minutes yesterday to hash over who to replace Bob Cordaro on the ticket with A.J. Munchak for the Nov. Lackawanna County Commissioner race. AND guess who they chose: Surprise BOB CORDARO. Is that great or what. This bum who couldn't fill out a disclosure form after two tries. I hope Lackawanna County gets everything they are asking for.