Jan 3, 2010
The Reality of Regionalism
Yesterday, after reading two articles in The Morning Call, I wondered for a moment if there was a wizard behind the curtain. The first article, an editorial by the bureaucrats for regionalism, touted all the benefits; such as water distribution by the Lehigh County Authority, transportation by Lanta, and plans for a bi-county health bureau. The second article, by a reporter, was about the State of Pennsylvania considering whether The Little Lehigh needs some special oversight and protection. That article failed to mention that the biggest threat to the creek was the regional Lehigh Authority sucking out all the water to feed the water bottling industries on route 78. The article does mention that the Authority objects to the creek receiving protected designation. Also mentioned as opposed to oversight was the City of Allentown and Mayor Pawlowski. "The city believes that the department's(DEP) decision will needlessly hinder the economic viability of the city...."
The editorial promoting regional collaboration was written by the Director of Renew Lehigh Valley, Steven Bliss. Among the arrows in his regionalism quiver, it mentions The Lehigh Valley Planning Commission. In the creek article, the Planning Commission states it doesn't believe that there is "sufficient scientific justification" for watershed oversight. Bliss cites the quarter million dollar rail study, hawked by Paul Marin to the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corp., as an accomplishment. Close to my heart, he even then goes on to promote bike trails.
Steve, glad you have a job, but if the truth be known, I wish there was a wizard behind the curtain. Years ago people with ties to Allentown, looked after Allentown. People with ties to Easton looked after Easton. Now we have bureaucrats, subscribing to the same national government magazines, seeking grants for the same cookie cutter solutions. It's called mediocrity.
Rob Hamill is a local expert and advocate for The Little Lehigh Creek. He explains the entire situation in an excellent two part article.