Highly Anticipated Video of March 5, 2013 Bellevue Pre-Council Meeting

Dsyfunction-300x199After what we anticipated would be a quick and quiet Pre-Council Meeting last night,  turned into one of the most dramatic scenes of organizational dysfunction we’ve witnessed in a long time.

Mayor George Doscher accused a “council person(s)” of spying on at least one borough employee with a video camera.

Council President Linda Woshner tried to do all that she could to censor the mayor; even to the degree of demanding the chief of police arrest him have him removed from council chambers by force!

Council Vice President Jim Viscusi stormed out of the council chambers.

Council Member Jane Braunlich accused Liberty in Bellevue of spying on council while they are in executive session and forced us and the rest of the public in attendance of the meeting out of the council chambers for a short time.

Video Time Stamps:

0:36 – Call to Order, Flag Salute, Roll Call
ATTENDING:
Jane Braunlich, Solicitor McGrail, Pres. Woshner, Vice Pres. Viscusi, Sue Viscusi (via phone), Lynn Heffley, Mayor Doscher, Chief Setner.
ABSENT:
Frank Camello, Kathy Coder, Mark Helbling, Jim Scisciani.
2:13 – Public Comment – Rick Zapco(sp?) (regarding fees & charges from the Bellevue VFC), Connie Rankin (regarding the streetscape design), Mike Bannon (sp?) (regarding handicapped parking spot on Balph Ave.)
17:46 – Review of Minutes for 2/12/13 Council Meeting & 2/26/13 Committee Meetings
18:45 – Mayor Doscher opens discussion on the lack of communication about the executive sessions.
21:42 – Mayor Doscher speaks about alleged misconduct of certain council members towards borough employees.
25:10 – Councilwoman Braunlich explains that said council member did not “follow” this employee, only film said employee outside of the employees private residence.
28:30 – Woshner demands that the Chief of Police remove Mayor Doscher from council chambers.
29:25 – An Executive Session is called and the audience is asked to leave council chambers. At this point, Councilwoman Braunlich accuses LiB of being able to record/recording the executive sessions.

REPORTS:
32:47 – Treasurer (absent)
32:50 – Administration
34:50 – Council
COMMITTEE CHAIR REPORTS:
FINANCE:
35:11 – Motion to authorize the DAS to purchase video recording equipment at a cost not to exceed $1,000.
35:40 – Motion to authorize the purchase of bioscan (fingerprint) time clock software and licenses for borough staff not to exceed $15,000.
39:15 – Motion to approve the Feb 2013 invoice for the Business District Streetscape Design Project.
39:25 – Discussion about the proposal of the bioscan time clock software & hardware.
PARKS & RECREATION:
47:50 – Motion to approve the 2013 Fee Schedule for Bellevue Pool with no increase in rates.
PUBLIC SAFETY:
48:49 – Motion & Discussion to designate a Loading Zone on North Howard Ave, M-F from 8a.m.-12N to accommodate Meals On Wheels patrons & volunteers.
49:32 – Motion to change the fine for parking between marked & metered parking spaces.
PUBLIC WORKS:
52:00 – Motion to approve $500 to be spent on advertising for eight part time seasonal public works employees.
53:23 – Motion & Discussion to authorize the borough Engineer to place the Pool Roof Replacement Project out for public bid. (one “nay” vote by Pres. Woshner)
SPECIAL COMMITTEE REPORTS – NONE
RESOLUTIONS:
1:03:05 – Motion to authorize the hiring of Maureen Grant as pool manager for 2013.
ORDINANCES:
1:03:20 – PAWN SHOP ORDINANCE – FIRST READING:
Motion & Discussion to introduce an ordinance to regulate the amount of time a pawn shop or second hand shop would be required to “hold” valuable items before placing them up for sale.
1:04:26 – LARGE VEHICLE ORDINANCE – FIRST READING:
Motion on amending regulations on the parking of large motor vehicles on borough streets.
1:04:32 – INTERNATIONAL FIRE CODE – FIRST READING:
Motion & Discussion on introducing an ordinance with shall establish and enact the 2012 International Fire Code to the borough.
OLD BUSINESS:
1:06:07 – Councilwoman Braunlich states the Michelle Smith of Enjoy Bellevue is seeking the proper licensing and the like for upcoming borough events.
NEW BUSINESS:
1:08:27 – Councilwoman Braunlich explains proposed a contract with Spencer & Friends Dog Boarding.
President Woshner details borough “Dumpster Days”.
President Woshner encourages council to approve the Streetscape Design plan before the borough loses the funding. Councilwoman Braulich MOTIONS to approve the plan as long as the safety “bump outs” are removed.
PUBLIC COMMENT:
1:13:11 – Danina DiBattista (inquires about the Pawn Shop Ordinance & Large Truck ordinance, and comments on time clock software and loading zone proposal)
Vincent (about the bump outs & bike friendly streets)
Lisa Saylor (about the bump outs & time clock software)
1:24:25 – MOTION TO ADJOURN

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55 Responses to “Highly Anticipated Video of March 5, 2013 Bellevue Pre-Council Meeting”

  1. Council is a joke. Do they ever get anything done that’s good for the residents?

  2. Not only is Braunlich a dunce she is now exhibiting symptoms of paranoia. On another note, you keep stating on this site that it does not matter whether people are democrats or republicans or independents or libertarian and political affiliation doesn’t matter. Political affiliation does indeed matter! Almost every extremely dysfunctional political entity in the USA is overseen or has been overseen for decades by democrats. The majority, by a large margin, of politicians in prison are democrats. Corruption, ineptitude and cronyism abound where democrats are in charge. Why can’t you see this? Robert DiNiro, as casino boss Lefty Rosenthal, said when firing his slot machine manager in the movie Casino when two slot machines hit major jackpots within minutes, “you’re either in on it or you’re too stupid to know when you’ve been taken and either way you’re out”. This indeed puzzles me! You must solicit, promote and support people of other than democrat party affiliation before many citizens are going to take LIB seriously. The democrat mindset is to not help anyone but themselves, their cronies and their benefactors. They have little business knowledge and even less knowledge of how economies function nor do they have any inclination to learn these things. Why is the republican party referred to as the party of the rich? It is because, beginning with the middle class, they know how to use money and assets more efficiently and they can apply that knowledge and expertise to all endeavors, including and especially, government. LIB has the potential to be a great thing but it must promote a political philosophy to succeed in the local political arena.

  3. can we impeach these people??? If a President of the USA can be impeached, how do we go about doing it with a local gov that has showed MANY wrong doing at many different levels? How does the community or others council/mayor etc show documented questionable illegal activity and performing the next action? Do we just continue to allow it to happen over and over thru the years? Yes new council members will come in but if the majority of those stay then these issues continue to occur.

  4. Clearly the Mayor was wrong in bringing up a personal matter in public, especially when he was warned repeatedly by the solicitor to not discuss the matter. What the Mayer fails to understand is that when legal counsel advises you, in public, that you may be opening yourself and the borough up to a legal action. The Mayor by ignoring advice of the solicitor would not be covered by errors and omissions insurance that covers all elected officials from being sued personally if they run afoul of the law as public officials. Now if the Mayor does not mind digging into his own pocket for acting the fool, well, what can I say.
    On the other end of the argument if an employee is cheating the tax payers out of money by cutting out from work on a regular basis, and a council member wants to document it, which is a wise idea if you’re going to bring it to the attention of a (political body,) that council member had an obligation to do so. Now (if) that council member could have went to the former DAS as suggested by the Mayor he probably would have, but given that the actions of the former DAS were just as bad, or actually worse if you factor in the affair with another employee…Well need I say more?
    Of course Liberty is going to try and twist this issue to support their political agenda of helping the republicans take back control of council, by the way, which caused all of this cronyism and slacking on the part of several employees.

    • I’m pretty sure that if the alleged actions by said council member(s) is actually true…perhaps they should have asked for the advice of our brand new solicitor as to whether or not it was in their best interest to secretly spy on a borough employee. If the allegations are in fact true, perhaps we should take a look at the job description of the council members. Are they considered employee managers, general managers, or even assistant managers? If they had suspicions that an employee or employees were not accomplishing their job to the expected requirements, then maybe the next step would be to empower the manager or someone in a higher position to sit down with said employee and discuss the issue at hand. If this issue continued, perhaps replacing said employee would be the next best viable step. Employees are replaceable, just like council members are replaceable.

      Is there a no fraternization rule among the borough employees? If not, then it seems like there’s not really much of a case here. Was there an open relationship in the borough office, or just speculation of one amongst the council drama club? What are facts about this “tax payer cheating employee”? Were they simply going home for their lunch break, or truly not working their full time hours?

      I find it funny that while you can go on and on about this or that, trying to diffuse the situation that is clearly on this video footage, never once have you said that secretly following an borough employee around with a camera is definitely NOT OK to do, perhaps even illegal. They could have always used tax payer monies to inquire with our solicitor about the legalities, right? You can keep going with your rhetoric of DIFFUSE DIFFUSE DIFFUSE. In the meantime, we’ll keep posting unedited video footage of these people digging themselves into a gigantic hole. We no longer have to write blogs to point out their ineptitude to the public, they are doing a great job at exposing their bad sides on their own. Don’t worry, we’ll still write blogs, just to give you some informational reading material.

  5. I doubt seriously if it is against the law to video a lazy employee, who I hear has been doing this for years, no doubt costing the taxpayers in Bellevue thousands of dollars in lost hours of work. Rick Earle does it all the time for channel 11 news, as do many other news folks. And if I heard right the lazy employee was not being followed, he was being observed coming to his home early every day for three months. Not lunch, coming home early. If you had a situation in Bellevue that would have allowed for a council person, or any citizen to report this to management I suspect it would have been done. Unfortunately, under the circumstances, because of hiring practices of the former majority on council their existed a relationship between said employee, manager, and certain members of council that would have fore warned the bum that his theft of services was being observed. Besides, do you really think that the manager who was having an affair with an employee, that everyone knew about, including his (ex) wife was going to go after another cheating employee? Your right when you use the word, (dysfunctional) that’s exactly what you had in Bellevue under the direction of Kathy Coder and her bunch of self-serving followers that allowed this type of behavior to fester. But I also know that you choose to turn a blind eye to the truth. That’s too bad; you really could do so much good for your community if you were not so prejudiced by your own agendas, self-induced hatred, and illusions of grandeur that you have as the perceived saviors of democracy. Watching that video tape of you all at the meeting kind of reminded me of a vigilante group on steroids, and obviously people that could care less about the truth. Again, it’s sad, you really could be a force for good if you were not so lost in your agenda of destroy them at all costs.

  6. Oh my…here you go again Mr. Purcell, you’re (that’s the proper spelling of the contraction for the word “you are”, which you so often misspell) up on your high horse, trying to give out back handed compliments to us. If you truly think that watching that video doesn’t (another contraction) display the dysfunction of our leadership, then you sir, must be living under a rock.

    Attempting to MINIMIZE the situation at hand here is a great tactic. However, in case you haven’t noticed, the people of Bellevue are coming to LiB for updates on what’s going on in council chambers. We are in fact, the only people that are putting the facts out there in the form of unedited video footage. A minute taker can’t replicate that, the archaic cassette recorder inside the borough chambers can’t replicate it, the generally biased “news” coverage in our local paper can’t replicate it, and as you probably know (which explains your sudden resurgence onto our site), the council drama club can’t even replicate it (although they try oh so hard – some people should really stick to their day jobs.)

    I think every elected official inside of borough hall looked pretty bad in this video, including the Mayor. He seemed out of control, I admit. However, the information that he put out there for the public is not something that should kept a secret. If the information that he stated is in fact true…sounds like there are some major leadership and management issues within the borough. But as LiB has been pointing out for almost a year now…WE ALREADY KNOW THAT! What causes a perfectly good ship to sink? A bad captain, or in Bellevue’s case, a group of nice (but completely incompetent) people who are attempting to LEAD, but failing miserably. Sometimes it’s better to just admit that something (such as leadership), just isn’t your gig, and it’s better to just walk away from it, don’t you think?

    If our last borough manager was not doing his job up to the standards set for him, or if he was breaking some fraternization rule, or if he was skipping out on work early and still getting paid, then he should have been terminated and replaced. If the employee that was creepily filmed outside of their home was in fact not doing their job, or leaving and getting paid for it, one of the superiors to that employee should have fired them. It’s that simple. But you’re going to try to blame this on Kathy Coder…your infatuation with her is almost as creepy as someone sitting outside an employees home filming them.

  7. Danina, you really are a bitter person. Where did you learn such behavior? And still in denial I see. You and this group started all of this for Coder and you are still living in a delusional state trying to pretend that you are saving the Borough of Bellevue from bad government.
    What I viewed on your tape was a meeting going along according to the rules of decorum and Roberts Rules of Order until the Mayor went on a tangent for political reasons, contrary to civility and the rule of law. I can guarantee you that in any other Borough or Township he would have been removed long before it got out of hand. Yet you twist it all to suit your agenda of opposition to Linda Woshner, or anyone that you think might support her and the majority on council. Did you notice that Coder, Helbling, and Camello are absent more than they are at council meetings? Why are you ranting about that? Hmmmm….. You ignore the fact that the Mayor has no business or say so in matters of employment other than public safety. Read his job description..I have no fascination with Kathy Coder, I just know that she used the citizens of Bellevue, or I should say (tried) to use the citizens of Bellevue for her own personal/political agenda and was soundly rejected for it, and this group is carrying her water. I hear she might run again for council. What’s wrong? Can’t you find anyone to run in her place? Anyone and I mean ANYONE that would step in at look at what this group has been doing over the past year would surely see what I see. Just keep living the lie. A child could see your fronting for Coder and company. No question people will see right through your attempt to take control of council for your own personal reasons. I’m betting you won’t be successful. Your ugliness and hate filled diatribe will turn the voters off in a hot second.

    • There you go again, attempting to minimize the situation, and attempting to minimize me, and attempting to minimize the reality that is clearly happening on this video and so many before it. Bitter? I guess if you consider the truth to be bitter, then yes you might be onto something. I clearly stated that the Mayor was out of line, maybe you missed that part??

      Where have you been Mr. Purcell? You seemed to show up again out of the blue when something dramatic happens in the Bellevue council chambers. Might I remind you and anyone else that is new to this blog…Mr. Purcell is a resident in Ross Twp. It’s election season, maybe that’s why you’re gracing us with your presence!

  8. I am happy to say that since we released this video, we have had 25 people share the video from this blog page to facebook, we have had 142 people watch the video on YouTube, and 3 people share it from our LiB facebook page. Pretty good, considering it has only been live for a little over 24 hours. Keep sharing guys, the public should know what is happening around here!

  9. Mr. Purcell,
    I realized that i failed to answer one of your inquiries about council member attendance.
    I am extremely frustrated with the attendance of members that miss meetings repeatedly. I think it’s important that once you take the job as a council member that it be a priority to attend meetings. From their perspective, i can understand why it’s so easy to miss meetings when you know that no matter what you say or do, you will be out-voted. This is one of the major problems that i see within this council. Too much divide, too much drama, and too much spitefulness. Why attend meetings when you will be out voted no matter how logical your plea may be? Everyone is sticking together in the council drama club, are they not? It would be nice to have a fresh council, one that works as a team to accomplish things, take the town in a better direction, and lose the status quo. Stop with all the BS and get things done.

    Mr. Helbling rarely misses meetings, in fact, he’s usually a lone soldier trying to talk some sense into the rest of ’em.

    Mrs. Coder misses way to many meetings in my opinion, it’s frustrating to me, believe me. She at least tries to attend them via phone, but in case you haven’t seen the phone that they’re using..it’s probably100 years old, I’m surprised it’s not a rotary…

    We have suggested that they incorporate Skype into the mix so that members that are out of town or caught up at home can still attend the meetings via computer. Clearly the speakerphone is not working, per Mrs. Viscusi’s experience in this video. But hey, what do we know, right? Every suggestion that we’ve made has been dismissed or spitefully ignored.

    Mr. Camello has missed more meetings than I can count, also very frustrating.
    Am i going to crucify them for not attending meetings, NO. Am i going to say that we need to overhaul the way that council functions and set expectations, YES.

  10. The employee in question is a salaried employee that works more than 50 hours a week. This employee is on call for any type of emergency. In my salaried world it is called “comp time”. He does not work 24 hours a day for the amount of money he/she makes. You work forty hours and if it is during different hours within a 24 hour period you shave time off when you can. I am pretty sure that what was documented isn’t defined in the personnel code. I personally find it creepy that a grown man is video taping a family (with small children) for months. How do we know that it wasn’t a doctored tape? People make fake tapes all of the time. There is special devices that don’t allow you to doctor the taping. Grow up. We do not pay our valuable employees of this borough enough money to put up with this type of harassment and character assassination. If you have a problem with an employee you confront them at the time of the incident in question. You don’t set them up by creeping around their property. I can’t imagine how this person feels. I feel violated just knowing about it.

  11. This makes me appreciate the show Parks and Recreation all the more, especially the scenes where Leslie Knope takes questions from the public.

    Some of the questions asked of the council in this video are hilarious, or laughable — not really sure which.

    • Chad,
      Are you referring to questions from council members to other council members? Or questions from residents to council members?\

      • I’ve been following this blog for a while now, and it seems to me that LIB is more dedicated to antagonizing the council members it dislikes than it is to advancing a plan that improves Bellevue’s economic situation.

        The questions you asked in this video and one you asked in a previous video (about the minute-taker) seemed to be more confrontational than inquisitive.

        The claim that LIB is nonpartisan and only seeking a way to improve Bellevue is proven false by LIB’s constant assaults on two or three council members.

        I personally know (and like) about half of the council. And I’m sure that the other half, like the half I know, has no intention to do harm to the borough. So the claim that “those in the ‘inner circle of power’ have maintained a choke hold on our town” and are the sole reason for Bellevue’s decline is, to me, laughable.

        Also: how is one to take LIB seriously when over 20 of the posts on this site are tagged with “tyranny”? The whole movement, from my removed perspective, seems only interested in petty politics.

  12. 22:32 –

    Mayor Doscher: “I’m not speaking about the personal matter; I’m speaking about the behavior of the council people.”
    Linda Woshner: “[yells over him]Excuse me…*insane gavel pounding*

    I think she just proved his point…in a manner of speaking…

  13. Danina you’re going to learn a valuable lesson in your pursuit to control what this council does…It just doesn’t work that way. When people get elected to a public office they have their own minds and ideas. I sat in the minority for 18 of my 20 years as a Ross Commissioner and my attendance record was very good. It’s no excuse to take your ball and go home if you can’t have your way. Says a lot about these people and none of its good. These absentee council people should just resign and do the community a favor.
    There is no situation to minimize Danina, just a contrived (dysfunction) on your part to make those that you don’t like look bad, and of course anyone can find other haters that sit back and contribute nothing to our society. Linda Woshner and others that you disagree with and want to replace with your own puppets could not do anything right in your eyes if they tried.
    You and your group are just too obvious Danina, you have an agenda, it’s self-serving and its wrong minded. It will not sell to the voters. Hate and viciousness never do. Just ask Coder.

    • I have voiced my agreement with Linda on numerous occasions, actually. We don’t agree on much, but when she does things that I agree with, I let her know about it. And I am pretty sure that other members of LiB have expressed agreement with her on occasion as well. Trust me, LiB members have disagreements on things all the time, but we work it out and compromise on things.

      I am not ever going to say that council is or should be some utopia of hugs and unicorns. Of course people will and should have their own opinions. What i think the major problem is right now is that the “old guard” is of the mind set that because they’ve been here since the dawn of time, that they know best. I think that replacing them with people of a more open mind set, with no old bones to pick would be nothing but beneficial to the borough. Of course no one is going to agree all the time. But if you take away all the crap that is happening between council members right now and replace it with fresh, level headed, driven, and motivated people that can actually work together instead of splitting the vote every time, i think we’ll see some progress. People that are able to compromise and talk about things, toss ideas around, etc… Maybe even incorporate some inexpensive (yet effective) ways to market the borough and bring us into the 21st century.

      What we do have here is a borough that is hurting and crumbling, while areas around us that are in far worse shape than we are, are finding ways to work together to turn things around. Like i said before, 20 years of bad captains and bad leadership is sinking this ship.

  14. Lisa Blaney, Sounds like you know who this employee is. You might have to tell how you came about this information in a court someday. You are no longer a member of Bellevue Council and have no business knowing what went on in that meeting, but obviously you do.

    And you try to defend that employee with this craziness of “someone was watching his kids???” This guy, whoever it is…is nothing but a lazy cheating bum. You can try to parse this any way you want, but a spade is a spade. He should be fired at the very least, and possibly investigated by the Attorney General’s office for stealing public funds…and you’re going to defend his actions? Why am I not surprised? Because you were part of that former majority that created this atmosphere of political cronyism that makes these public employees, paid with tax dollars, think they can cheat and steal the citizens of Bellevue’s hard earned money.

  15. I don’t have a dog in this race because I’m not a resident of Bellevue but I do have friends there and it is obvious that this council is very dysfunctional. I called it the “roll your eyes committee” from the one meeting I attended because no matter who talked, someone else rolled their eyes. I’ve seen better behavior from a group of first graders. How anything gets done is amazing. But let’s not kid ourselves. This isn’t a Bellevue problem; it’s a nationwide problem. Until we all realize that we have to all compromise, nothing will get done efficiently. Mark, I understand your enthusiasm but I have no idea where the passion comes from, since you aren’t a resident either. Do you have ulterior motives?

    This council, including it’s leadership, has shown it to be incompetent. There is blatant, at the very least, ethical issues with the hiring of the new counselor. How that isn’t dealt with by any court is beyond me.

    Following anyone with a camera, although not illegal, is also a little unethical. Why not call the employee out and reprimand them? Why use the tax payers dollars to both buy a camera and then use someone’s time to film them? Sounds like bad tea to me.

    The best thing about all of this is that we are seeing our great nation at work – flaws and all. We can all have differing opinions. Just try to be civil and respectful. Neither one of those characteristics were on hand in that meeting.

  16. I don’t have a dog in this race because I’m not a resident of Bellevue but I do have friends there and it is obvious that this council is very dysfunctional. I called it the “roll your eyes committee” from the one meeting I attended because no matter who talked, someone else rolled their eyes. I’ve seen better behavior from a group of first graders. How anything gets done is amazing. But let’s not kid ourselves. This isn’t a Bellevue problem; it’s a nationwide problem. Until we all realize that we have to all compromise, nothing will get done efficiently. Mark, I understand your enthusiasm but I have no idea where the passion comes from, since you aren’t a resident either. Do you have ulterior motives?

    This council, including it’s leadership, has shown it to be incompetent. There is blatant, at the very least, ethical issues with the hiring of the new counselor. How that isn’t dealt with by any court is beyond me.

    Following anyone with a camera, although not illegal, is also a little unethical. Why not call the employee out and reprimand them? Why use the tax payers dollars to both buy a camera and then use someone’s time to film them? Sounds like bad tea to me.

    The best thing about all of this is that we are seeing our great nation at work – flaws and all. We can all have differing opinions. Just try to be civil and respectful. Neither one of those characteristics were on hand in that meeting.

  17. Mark, I knew you would come out of that hole you dwell in. I just thought it would have been on some site lambasting the Ravenstahls. For some of our new readers, Mark Purcell lives in Ross but is a “hired tongue” of Woshner, Braunlich and company. So our council has sunk to new lows, maybe they should apply for some federal funds and get a drone to do their spying. This is embarrassing…again. Come on Linda and Jane grow up and start acting like adults. This is not Bellevue High anymore. Mark, could you pass that on like a good little flunky. I also agree with Nina, I think you are enamored with Ms. Coder.

  18. @Chad Ference,
    I think it’s important to know the history of WHY I am asking the particular questions that I’m asking. As far as the previous question about the minute taker…We’ve had numerous minute takers quit working for the borough due to the level of BS that they have to deal with from elected officials. I was genuinely curious about why the minute taker had been absent in that last meeting, and then when i asked about it, everyone put their best grammy face on and pretended that they had not idea what could possibly be going on with the minute taker. Come to find out, she quit. With so many of our employees just throwing their hands up and quitting, there’s gotta be a good reason for that. In this economy, who just quits their job without really being pushed to their limit? Yeah, i might have pushed a button or two by saying they can use the LiB footage.

    As far as Tuesday’s meeting goes, i asked four questions. Two of them were about proposed ordinances that had absolutely ZERO explanation in the agenda & if you watch the video, there is ZERO explanation to them during the motions to propose the ordinances. Not sure who’s to blame for the lack of proper ordinance explanation, but the residents should be able to clearly read what each ordinance is actually for. I think the agenda from tuesday is posted on here somewhere, you can clearly see that the ordinances are not explained.

    The reason that i inquired about the loading zone is because i am genuinely curious as to why they would take away parking spots along or near the business district for something. As you can hear during the proposal of this in the video, there is not very much explanation of the business/organization that this is being proposed for, or much other info whatsoever. It is also not explained in the agenda. On a certain level, it’s very interesting to me how quickly they push through requests from business owners and organizations and non profits in the area. But when a business owner like myself comes to months upon months of committee meetings, pre council meetings, and regular council meetings pleading for them to allow me to expand and better my business by allowing my patrons to sit outside, only to be met with some lame excuse to not only deny my request, but to deny a request for a trial period as well. I mean come on! I spent several months trying to explain how this would benefit my business, and brighten up the business district, and possibly start a trend that could help to make this town a little brighter. Mind you, every meeting that i went to during that time was on a night that the restaurant was OPEN.

    As for the inquiry about the $15,000 bioscan time card machines. Let’s get real here…the person that is so gung-ho about this product refuses to use email and the internet. So for her to say that it’s so great because it’s technological is “laughable”. Do we, as a one square mile town require a $15,000 fingerprint scanner to keep a tab on employees? Maybe simply going from a pen and paper style of signing into work to a digital time clock might be a better step to take? Or maybe even a key-card style door to keep track of who’s in the building and when. Our council president went on a witch hunt several months ago, asking to see private information on borough cell phones. It was not in anyones contract that they were not permitted or limited to only using the phones for business at that time. A proposal to simply change the employees contracts to read that the borough cell phones are to be only used for borough business would have solved the problem, but instead it was blown out of proportion and basically turned into a witch hunt.

    One terrible decision after another from these people makes it very difficult to not wonder why they’re pushing for things. I encourage you to come to meetings. While I may not be able to hide some of my sarcasm, I think you will be pretty shocked at what you see happening within this borough.

  19. One would think that with the Levi Duff Bridge closed its resident troll would stay on his side of the interstate. Then again, he’s going to have a lot of time to dedicate to Kathy Coder obsessing now that Luke Ravenstahl is stepping away! Welcome back, Mark Purcell!

  20. I have to say DaNina when I read some of your posts you seem to have some potential, and then you go off on a rant about sinister motives and such. Does anyone reading this REALLY think it’s not costing the taxpayers of Bellevue a lot of money while some employees run amuck? The problem is deeper than you obviously know and should be address immediately. In Ross, long before I became a commissioner in 1978 our employees, including our police punched a time clock, and still do. Was it a perfect system with employees never slacking? Of course not, but we handled it accordingly when necessary. Did the Commissioners ever bicker and fight? All the time, BUT, when the meetings were over or when we socialized we were civil and got along very well. We ran candidates against each other, went after each other politically, but today when I have occasion to see any of them we are like long lost friends. The ugliness that’s going on in Bellevue politics today was created by an overly ambitious girl that didn’t care whose toes she stepped on to achieve her personal/political agenda. All of it is being made MUCH uglier and counterproductive, (in my estimation) by this group, that at times over steps the bounds of common decency with its bizarre hatred for certain people on Bellevue’s council.
    Why do I care about what goes on in Bellevue? First of all I never involved myself in Bellevue’s politics, they brought me into it by the ugly behavior of their former DAS, Road Superintendent, and members of council treating me and my neighbors like second class citizens, simply because we ask them to stop dumping their rubbish in their lot that borders our street. When they came and cut down our buffer of 30 year old pine trees out of spite I knew immediately that something was VERY wrong in Bellevue politics. And that’s an understatement. I grew up in Bellevue. Have family, lifelong friends, and property in Bellevue. Everything they do affects me and those of us that live on the border of the Park and Borough.
    Change in government is a good thing, but not in the way Liberty is doing it, or why they are doing it. Again, many of you already know that I have been doing politics all my adult life in one form or another, and have seen groups like yours come and go. They almost never work because the ugliness that they spit turns people off eventually. And yes, Luke is finally gone, but I am still working actively on Peduto’s campaign. Sorry guys, I won’t be able to help you in your attempt to overthrow the government of Bellevue.

  21. Of course not Leigh, but what I am against is the purposeful disruption of the public’s business for a political agenda based on falsehoods and lies.

  22. The great thing about the videos is that they are an exact portrayal of what happens in these meetings. If for no other reason at all, the people of this town want to replace these council members simply for their behavior. The yelling and screaming, talking down to one another, talking over one another, lack of communication skills, refusal to participate in 21st century forms of communications, i mean the list goes on and on.

    I have had people come up to me and simply state that they can’t (CAN’T!) sit through a meeting in person because they’re so disgusted with the eye rolling, yelling, and clearly evident (angry) divide among council. Is that not enough reason to start fresh? I certainly think it is.

  23. Then DaNina, a simple question, why not move to replace them all instead of getting behind certain ones as you will in this election? Simple answer is, that won’t happen because Liberty in Bellevue is a front for certain candidates and current council members and has been from the very beginning.
    While DaNina and company pose as, “A group of Bellevue citizens solely interested in changing Bellevue for the better.” The facts and their actions do not bear that out. For example; you will never see DaNina post inflammatory sensational headlines or videos on this blog about Bellevue Councilman Mark Helbling. Why? Well for starters they have a business relationship going on that was fueled by their desire to get Bellevue citizens to ok the selling of liquor in the borough. Helbling is moving to open a business in DaNina’s closed restaurant, closed she contends partially because certain Bellevue Council members are backward thinking when they do not support liquor in Bellevue. Oh, and yes, these happen to be the same council members that Liberty in Bellevue has keyed in on from their inception as (Dysfunctional.)
    Will you ever see a sensationalized video of the mostly empty seat of Bellevue Councilman Frank Camello, who misses meeting after meeting, or Kathy Coder, who has been missing in her duties as a Bellevue Councilperson, after not winning (one single poll in Bellevue,) in her attempt to unseat Matzie? Will you ever see a sensationalized video touting the evils of $700.000 in hidden funds given to Coder in her failed bid to become a State Legislator, money that you will never know who or why these mysterious people gave it to her. Nothing (Dysfunctional) about mysterious people giving secret bribes to political candidates for higher office I guess. Not worthy of a sensational video I guess. Not worthy of the Lynch Mob mentality that Liberty employs in their attempt to mislead you about what is really wrong or right in the Borough of Bellevue? Of course it is not.
    You will never see any of this because as I have said from the very beginning, Liberty in Bellevue is a front for these above mentioned councilmembers. That being, any councilmembers that oppose the current majority on Bellevue Council.
    Liberty in Bellevue is actively seeking and supporting (anyone) that will oppose the current majority on Bellevue Council, but still want you to believe that they are not a “Political Action Committee.”
    Liberty in Bellevue is a Red herring.
    (Red herring is an English-language idiom that commonly refers to a logical fallacy that misleads or detracts from the actual issue. It is also a literary device employed by writers that leads readers or characters towards a false conclusion.)

  24. Mr. Purcell, You are the penultimate hypocrite. You come on here and brag about your record of “civility” while a Ross commissioner. However, YOUR record is anything less than civil: http://northpghpolitics.blogspot.com/search?q=Mark+Purcell. Don’t call for fair talk on here then come on and SLANDER individuals – good people with careers, marriages, and families. You cowardly insinuate illegal action, theft, and adultery – all in the name of helping your friends. Talk about civility! We should put a statue of you in Bayne Park!

    You want non-partisan talk? I’m tired of Mark Helbing and Kathy Coder missing meetings. I’m especially tired of Frank Camello missing meetings because he represents my ward. You either have time to serve or don’t – which is why I won’t run for office in Bellevue. I have a 50+ hour/week job, a family, and other involvement elsewhere.

    Please go back on your side of the interstate.

  25. This video shows two things: Bellevue Council DOES NOT TRUST YOU and they are PARANOID.

    These are the same folks who voraciously campaigned to prevent you from ordering a beer or wine with dinner (and detracting any potential restaurant beyond fried food & pizza). They said you (and those who would come here to dine) can’t be trusted to handle your alcohol correctly. They said we would turn into the South Side. Really! They said people are waiting to take advantage of you by investing $50-100k to open lowest-common-denominator “dive bars”. They used our neighbor (and partner) communities as examples of the negative sides of alcohol.

    These are the same folks who moaned about the last set of council leaders playing favorites with appointed positions such as the Allegheny Together Business Development Advisory Committee (sounds like something you wouldn’t want to mess with). Then when elected into leadership go and wipe out those existing working groups with their own favorite cronies.

    These are the same folks who didn’t want a skate plaza because they can’t trust your kids to behave or not get injured. I guess they would rather have more teens wandering Lincoln Avenue to dart out in front of cars and buses.

    These are the same folks who felt the need to purchase trees to quiet the complaints from a ROSS TOWNSHIP resident who lives adjacent to the Bellevue Memorial Park. They ignored a proposal for free trees from a local organization only to buy trees from landscaping company owned by THE SON OF THE SAME ROSS TOWNSHIP RESIDENT.

    These are the same folks who don’t trust you to watch over your dog or children when using our new dog park. They pushed through rules that prevent ANY CHILD UNDER 12 from being in the dog park. They feel that your child “might be seen as prey” by someone’s dog. I thought these were dogs – not wolves! Apparently we can’t be trusted to watch our children at the park. Meanwhile, private dog parks such as Misty Pines in Franklin Park allows children and all public parks run by Allegheny County such as in North Park allow for children “under supervision”.

    This is the same group who fired who they call “a good man” as our borough solicitor…all to save $15,000 annually…and because he was hired by the previous council leadership. Obviously they didn’t trust him! The replaced him with a firm (no one solicitor) WHO REPRESENTED A COUNCIL MEMBER in a previous litigious fight to challenge election results so she could remain on council.

    It was revealed at the last meeting that a council member was videotaping a borough employee and his children playing in their yard. Creepy! Why was he doing it? Because he suspected the employee was skipping out on work. Why didn’t he contact the employee’s supervisor? Because he didn’t trust him.

    Now lastly, this is the group who after firing someone to save $15,000 now wants to spend it on an employee timeclock system THAT REQUIRES FINGERPRINT to “clock in.” Why such an extravagant system for a community lacking wealth? Council doesn’t trust employees to NOT clock in fellow employees.

    Paranoia. Lack of Trust. Bellevue Politics.

  26. Mr. Purcell,
    You pathetic attempt at trying to pigeon hole us and attempt to foresee what we will do in this upcoming election is hysterical. There are a lot of great people running in this election. I personally feel that although certain council members have shown a lot more maturity and a lot better representation of what leaders should be in a community, replacing them is the only way to really see this town come full circle. There are far too many deep rooted battles from who knows how long ago within the current group of people. But thank you oh-so-much for you incredible wisdom into what you think i will do in the future. Get off your high horse. Talk about slanderous, you keep saying that we’re some front for candidates that are currently on council…LiB was spawned last year when a group of Bellevue citizens realized that 20+ years of bad leadership has set Bellevue on a path to failure. It was then that we began to brainstorm on ways to bring these things to light, to the forefront, and to the attention of the residents. If you look at how many views our videos have, and how many shares our posts on facebook have, i think we’re accomplishing our goal. The town is buzzing with talk of the dispicable behavior of our leadership.

    Mr. Helbling and I actually disagree on plenty of things, and he disagrees with the majority on council a lot, but you never see him bobbing his head, speaking like a 15 year old, or raising his voice in anger the way some of our other council members have clearly shown on tape. As far as some secret rhetoric that you think I have with Mr. Helbling…I have said it before, and I’ll say it again because you clearly realize that we’re gaining fans by the day, so you think that attempting to slander my family’s name is a good move right now since you have “new” eyes reading your nonsense. There is no underlying scheme to make Bellevue “wet” between anyone. It’s pretty out in the open, and if you ever leave your house, you will notice that the areas of PGH that are flourishing have alcohol. The idea of having a drink with dinner or being able to grab a hotdog and a beer are not new concepts, I’m not sure why pushing for progress always is made to be a monstrous idea by you and your friends.
    Mr. Helbling gave us the best offer on the building that my family had for sale in the borough. If someone else would have offered a better price, we would have sold it to them. My parents have moved on from Bellevue after investing in numerous businesses, acting as a “one man” business recruiting company. Remember several years ago when Lincoln Ave was buzzing with new businesses and eateries and boutiques? Yeah, there was a lot of DiBattista blood, sweat, and tears that went into that. Maybe you also remember the multiple requests put in by these many businesses to the council to help them to better their business, and the constant, ignorant responses and denials that the council would give these business owners. A business district CANNOT survive without the support of the leadership in a town.
    My parents still live here in town, however, after the town of Sewickley repeatedly told them how welcomed they would be in the area and how wonderful the leadership was there…they chose to close their multi-award winning, top 25 best restaurant in pgh, with an award winning chef, and award winning staff out of Bellevue and to a place that welcomed them and accommodated them however they could. Not only did they come to the council in Sewickley with requests and questions (and low and behold, they received answers and requests were met), but the leadership, as well as the people in that town are supporting them unconditionally. Let’s not forget that nearly every business that opened during that little boom won awards ranging from Cool Space awards, Best in PGH awards, Best Coffee Shop in PGH awards, best pizza in PGH awards, the list goes on and on. But because the last 2 decades of leadership and lack of direction for the town, those business closed up, moved out of town, or simply gave up.
    What does this all mean? It means that absolutely, i definitely have an agenda…and that agenda is to bring our town out of the 1920’s and into 2013. To reinvigorate our business district, and alcohol is the ONLY way to attract artisan restaurants and boutiques. Restaurants open, boutiques follow, that generally how business districts grow.

    We don’t sensationalize anything…what we record is what you see on here. We try to keep the camera on the people that are speaking. And as a matter of fact, i wrote a blog on Wednesday morning, after re-watching the video and really thinking about the events that took place the night before. That blog has not been posted yet, because we like to wait a few days between postings, as to not flood the site with too many blog posts at one time. But in that blog post, i express my frustrations with that council members that miss meetings all to often. I emailed that blog to our website admin on Wednesday morning, and advised them to post it whenever they get time.

    The behavior, lack of couth, and just a general inability to accomplish much other than spending tax payer dollars on a bunch of B.S. (i.e. trees and fingerprint scanner time clocks), is enough reason to replace them. One of LiB’s goals going into 2013 was to not have a single council seat in this election run uncontested. Last time i checked, we are damn close to accomplishing that goal. Hopefully the drama club will be gone, and if that means that a few good council members get replaced, then so be it.

  27. Sorry Mark – cannot let you post content from private messages.

  28. Sorry Mark, cannot let you post content from private messages….Why, does it show what some people that follow your tripe are really all about Tom?

    DaNina, I’m really glad for your family. Good for them, really, but that has nothing to do with this Red herring you call Liberty in Bellevue.

    Oh, Scott’s latest post to me was…Are you a coward?…..Great representation of your thought process huh….

  29. Mr. Purcell,
    The reason that i went into detail about the business district, businesses that my family helped to open or recruited to open in town, is because i spoke to my “agenda” (as you call it) of wanting to see the business district buzzing once again. I also mentioned it because you keep trying to pigeon hole us as a “red herring”, and i was explaining how part of the reason that LiB was formed in the first place was because a group of citizens (not council members, as you keep repeating over and over – like a child that isn’t getting their way) saw that the town was/is heading in a not-so-great direction. We starting to look back on the 20+ years of bad leadership (including all of the things that i mentioned in my previous comment about the disintegration of the business district) and at some point, we realized that it’s not a good environment to do business in Bellevue. The leadership doesn’t value your requests to change things, doesn’t consider giving your ideas or needs a chance, and inevitably businesses give up, move on, or simply close. You can’t argue with this fact, in the last few years, we’ve lost business upon business in town, both newer businesses and established businesses as well. Meanwhile, in other areas of Pittsburgh, areas that are/were in worse shape than we are…businesses are popping up left & right, battling with each other for that “perfect” storefront. We should be in the same boat, there’s no reason that we should be in the dust behind these other towns. Our location, abundant parking, flat (walkable) business district, and close proximity to downtown should put us in the race. But instead, we’re left behind.

    So, actually, my explanation has LOTS to do with LiB, as it was one the main reasons that we started our group. So as much as you’d like to try to minimize (there you go again!) what we do, what we’re standing for, and what our goals are…it’s making our case stronger with the more you attempt to minimize everything.

  30. I think DaNina that you blame too much of what you perceive going on in the business sector of Bellevue on council, when in fact Bellevue is no different than many other inner boroughs and townships that ring a city. To make any business thrive you of all people must know that you need the clientele to come and want to spend their money at your establishment. I know Bellevue well. I moved there in 1957 and lived there and in the other North Boroughs for most of my years growing up, and I worship, shop, bank and eat in Bellevue almost daily. I’ve watched the changes that you speak of going on for decades in Bellevue, and very little of it can be controlled or manipulated by its local government. Most of the problems in Bellevue are societal and government cannot change or control that. I just read an extensive study on the North Boroughs and very little was suggested for the Lincoln Avenue business district.The citizens and professionals on that study commission saw the business district in Bellevue as very good. The study was done in 2004. As a matter of fact, the business part of the study concentrated its proposals for enhancing business on the Ohio River Blvd. I think you might have to agree that I understand what a local government can and cannot do in helping business thrive in its town. If you consider that most of my years as a Ross Commissioner were when McKnight Road was in full bloom. For many of those years I was Chairman of the Community Development Committee of Ross Township. I was in charge of re-writing our comprehensive zoning plans, worked closely with citizens and business on those projects and on their site plans. I was a business owner myself for 20 years. I think all of this gives me a perspective that most citizens would not possess. My experience and what I see in Bellevue and other communities does not tell me what Liberty in Bellevue is saying about business and its Council in Bellevue is correct.
    What I do see though is a politically motivated group of people wanting to take control of Bellevue Council, some of you for personal reasons. Not a criticism, but a statement of fact that you want to continue to deny. Anyone observing as I have your actions could not come to any other conclusion. Every action you take screams of support for one group against another. One group can do no wrong, while the other can do nothing right in your eyes. You actively recruit, and will support candidates for council. You have taken sides although you keep denying it. And you came in taking sides. Again not a criticism, just a statement of fact. What bothered me and continues to bother me about your group is the ugliness of name calling and unsubstantiated accusations, all in the name of political expediency. You have ignored wrongs and tried to make light of actions that certain members of Bellevue Council have done all in the name of a political agenda. I truly believe that anyone observing this as a neutral party would come to the same conclusion.And certainly anyone with extensive public and political experience as I have can see what is going on here. Again, not a criticism, just a statement of fact.

    • Mark, from what I have read lately on both sides of the issue…you, sir, are a child. You always have to have the last word and some retort to what anyone else has to say. You must have a high level of stress in your life trying to control things to an outcome you seem fit. In my mind, you have no place in bellevue politics..

    • Mr. Purcell,
      If you don’t think that bad leadership is a factor in a towns failure then I really don’t think we have much else to talk about, discuss, or debate. I see things one way, you see them another way. Do i blame the towns decline ENTIRELY on the council, no way. And i have said that numerous times. But i get it, you realize that there are lots of ‘new’ eyes on LiB’s site so you want to put on a good show for everyone. If our newcomers haven’t already, I’m sure they’ll peek through many of our past blogs and read my blog posts and comments explaining the role that i think the leadership (or lack there of) in our community has played a role in it’s decline over the last several decades.

      With that said, you may continue to talk and talk and talk…clearly, you’re doing a good job of tiring everyone out mentally because we all have to keep repeating ourselves over and over again.

      And just an observation, not a criticism (as you would say)…
      The last comment from you is far too grammatically correct for it to be you (again, not a criticism, just an observation). I say BRAVO to whoever you had compose it for you!

  31. I write all my own stuff, good or bad grammar, spelling, whatever. And after being harassed by Irlbacher, and the silly comments of (Leigh) do you really think I care about trying to get across to mental midgets like this???

    • Great work Mark. You cite an “extensive business study” that’s nearly 10 years old.

    • If insulting my intelligence makes you feel better about yourself, go right ahead. I know where I stand with intelligence. As for “harassment” – you couldn’t prove harassment with Atticus Finch representing you.

      Just like your typical methodology, when cornered or defeated, you resort to mudslinging and half-truths. Bring it on, old man.

  32. Jim, you have something better please enlighten us. Old Man? I’m proud of that. I had to work hard to become an old man. When and (if) you get there you might understand.

  33. Whats really amusing about some of you is, you just say things for the sake of argument. You have to do better than that. maybe it’s your lack of life experiences? I shouldn’t be surprised though, most of you today don’t even leave home until your 35.

    • Keep trying to invalidate us, Mr. Purcell. You know nothing about us because you don’t know who we are. Many of the group are married. Most own homes in Bellevue. Most have children.
      Without divulging my life story, I worked my way to bachelors and masters degrees, achieved national recognition in my field, got married, and buried my first child all before 30. Please don’t try to tell me I lack “life experience” just because I haven’t served in the military or run for public office.

  34. I’m very sorry to hear about the loss of your child Scott. No one should ever have to go through that. My wife lost two in childbirth so I can sympathize with you and your wife.. There is a God and he is merciful, so you and your wife will see that child someday again, I am absolutely convinced of that.
    No one is trying to invalidate anyone here. What I am simply trying to do is make some of you realize that your cutting up people, just like yourselves, that have families, problems, life’s ups and downs and really do care about others and their community. They do not deserve the treatment and slanderous remarks that have come from Liberty in Bellevue. Not one of these council people that your group has singled out for unwarranted and sometimes outright cruel criticism has any hidden agenda, or lust for power. I find them as just ordinary citizens that decided to get involved in their communities for the good of it. You absolutely have every right in the world to disagree with anything they do as public officials, and you can disagree with me. But, you Scott, and some others here have taken this into the level of gutter politics. You have threatened me, tried to intimidate me, all which I find laughable, and have been outright rude in your comments. For what purpose? For the good of your community? Do you really think you are believable to anyone when you act in that manor? What my experience with the public tells me is, you are not.
    Any of you that truly wants to get involved and make a difference I applaud you, but have some common decency in your interactions with others that you disagree with, and above all be honest about your motives and you (might) be successful.
    As for Liberty in Bellevue being a legitimate group? Everything I see them do tells me they are not. All their actions and how they have conducted themselves smells of Red herring. Until they start conducting themselves in a civil manor I doubt if they will be looked on as a legitimate group by the voting public.

  35. We’ll have to agree to disagree, Mr. Purcell. You are the regional master of “gutter politics” as evidenced by what you have tried to do to sully the name of Adam Ravenstahl in your personal vendetta against his family. A simple Google search for your name reveals too much to take you seriously.

  36. You’re a bit confused about my campaign against Adam Ravenstahl, or maybe prejudiced by your friendship with the Ravenstahl’s? I attacked his record in Harrisburg, or should I say lack of it. Never him personally. What he has done, by never taking the public microphone on the house floor, or in democratic caucus is unprecedented, and like it or not should be aired to the public. He’s elected and paid to represent, how do you do that if you’re petrified to speak or lobby for your constituents? He is definitely asleep in Harrisburg, rhetorically speaking of course.

  37. Oh, and we all know the only reason Adam is there, it’s because of Luke and his father the District Justice, who by the way, contrary to law was out campaigning for him. But that’s all about to fall apart. You know the old saying; Absolute power corrupts and power corrupts absolutely…Fitting, wouldn’t you say?

  38. “Oh, and we all know the only reason Adam is there, it’s because of Luke and his father the District Justice, who by the way, contrary to law was out campaigning for him. But that’s all about to fall apart.” Herein describes your vendetta against the family. Why? Because you like to stick your nose into the politics of places you don’t live!
    Why would a guy who grew up in Franklin Park and now lives in Bellevue care about the Ravenstahls? When cornered you throw out half-truths and false accusations. You’re better than this, grandpa!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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