Sunday, October 14, 2007

What's your sign

Sign, sign, everywhere a sign Blockin' out the scenery, breakin' my mind - Five Man Electrical Band

Some people discount the usefulness of yard signs in a political campaign, I'm not one of them. More than once the first time I became aware of somebody running for this or that office is when I spotted a yard sign for the candidate. Plus it's a traditional way of people showing support for their friends and neighbors. The latest dustup in Wilkes-Barre is over the placement of them on public property.

WILKES-BARRE - Starting Monday, public works employees will begin removing political signs on the edge of public property next to limited access roadways in Wilkes-Barre, Assistant Solicitor Bill Vinsko said.

Since when can Bill Vinsko give orders to DPW workers? He cites some ancient ordinance that says that signs cannot be 660 feet of a right of way on any limited access highways. The ordinance has never been enforced before and the timing has the usual suspects crying foul.

Republican City Council candidate Walter Griffith (via email):

My question is does anyone know if it is a public works dept. employee or a person that just wants to remove the sign ? They wont clean up the gutters of the city of the litter because of lack of manpower but they somehow have the manpower to enforce this ordinance...Seems odd to me...where was this ordinance in the Primary when the signs were all over the place..this is truly a set back for freedom and democracy..

We need to make this a loud noise and make it heard all over the City...The Candidates are being stifled by the City Council and our Freedom is being taken away.

Mayoral and council candidate Linda Stets:

If the city is not targeting anyone then I have to wonder if they will be removing real estate signs that are placed on public property, as they are also temporary, and serve no purpose after a house is sold. I also wonder why we would burden our over worked, stressed out 35 remaining DPW workers with yet another project when parks, streets, storm drains, and trash all needs picked up first. Does Mr. Vinsko truly think our DPW workers have nothing better to do?

In other Wilkes-Barre Politcal news various aspriants for office have submitted to the annual Times-Leader Inquisitions, if I missed any please send me the link.

Linda Stets says the neighborhoods are being ignored in favor of downtown development and wants a swimming pool opened at Coal Street Park.

Incumbent Council member Kathy Kane thinks things are going great and credits the Mayor with restoring the city's credit rating.

North End Democratic hopeful Mike Merritt repeats the usual claptrap about ridding neighborhoods of drugs and crime. He's been going door to door asking for votes but missed one important address.

Wilkes-Barre Online

My district’s favorite, Mike Merritt did the door-to-door thing on my street, but skipped this modest adobe even though he knew I was home. And that annoyed me to no end. What’s that all about? You want my vote, but you’re concerned about what I might write about you? Who knows. Maybe he thinks he doesn’t need my vote since he’s got the party’s endorsement. Whatever.

I'm pulling for John Yencha in this one.

And the sign said "Long-haired freaky people need not apply"


Anonymous said...

Well signs are good for local races but the presidential races, When i worked on the bush Campaign so called leaders such as george hassay wanted to control yard signs but were not willing to send thier lackeys to mkae phone calls. So i ahte yard signs

Anonymous said...

This whole sign thing is such BS.

Anonymous said...

This Sign issue is nothing more than a plot by the City Attorney, who by the way is Mayor Leighton's relation, to stop the people from having the right to know who to vote for in November.
The City Attorney has cited a Zoning Law that was never enforced before and has taken the entire Sign Zoning Law out of context. The law also says that you must have a permit to erect a sign of more than 7 sq feet in the City. I wonder if Bill Barrett and Rick Cronauer are going to face a fine for their 4ft x 8ft (32 sq Ft)and 4ft x 4ft ( 16 Sq Ft) signs that they have erected in the City. This is just another way for the City Elected Officials to show the electorate of our City how much they can keep their thumbs on the voters.

Anonymous said...

Vote, vote, vote the bums out in Wilkes-Barre! Go vote. Get your neighbor to vote. Give your elderly neighbor a ride to the polls. Do what you have to do, or accept the tax hike that is sure to come. Oh, I know, the budget for the W-B is coming out this afternoon, and no doubt there is no tax hike included, but just remember that they can amend it as soon as they are re-elected.

Anonymous said...

On the one hand, signs can't vote. On the other, what are the incumbents afraid of? Naturally, I would expect that if the challengers spent money on signs that the incumbents would try to do something about it. The trick is for the challengers, like Walter, to stop whining like a bit*h and come up with an alternative. Is Walter going to whine and pout and stamp his feet and fire off an email to somebody for help when the state says, sorry, no CDBG funds this year, or is he going to put his head together with others who are like-minded with their desire to see a better city and come up with an alternative plan to get things done without those funds?

Anonymous said...

Dear Anonymous,
I am not whining about the removal of the signs, what bothers me is why, and to whom is this policy directed ? I think that the current administration is trying to make a few candidates comply to an ordinance that was never enforced before and therefore making it unfair for everyone to campaign on the same playing field. I also think that the Mayor and his family are scared that they wont get elected this time so they are taking drastic measures like using the family City Attorney, William Vinsko to push his weight around to make sure some of us obey the rules. I will never run from doing what is right for the taxpayers and this is an example of unfair treatment of all people by a government of bullies that feel they can intimidate the electorate. I feel everyone needs to stand up to this type of government dictatorship and therefore make our City a better place to live. These Sign Laws have been on the books at least 30 years or more and this is the only time I can remember anyone in government actually enforcing them. I would remedy this by not allowing this type of behavior by the Administration and also passing a Anti Nepotisum Law to be sure that the Mayor does not have the power to make his family doo his dirty work.
Elect Walter Griffith Jr for City Council " A Man that wont allow the government to forget who they work for" the Taxpayers.

Anonymous said...

Hey Walter, just because you can't find anyone who wants your sign in your yard doesn't give you the right to put up signs in City parks. Its common sense. You know the laws, there have never been signs there before. "Honesty and Integrity" is your campaign slogan, right? So are you being honest placing your political signs on empty lots and lots of homes for sale??? Doesn't sound honest to me. Im sure you received permission to put the signs there right????Look in a mirror Walter, you're everything you're accusing this administration of.

Anonymous said...

There are plenty of folks with Walter's signs.

The fact is, nobody wants a Leighton sign anywhere, and since nobody wants his signs, he is outlawing Walter's and Stet's sign.

Plain and simple - petty politics from Wilkes-Barre's #1 criminal mind - Mayor Leighton.