Democratic candidates for state representative Terri Mitko (left) and Amy Fazio / photo via Mitko campaign's Facebook page

The Beaver County Democratic Committee is disavowing former state representative Mike Veon after BeaverCountian.com learned of an appearance he made at a strategy session for local political candidates.

Democrats Terri Mitko (who is running for state rep in the 15th legislative district) and Amy Fazio (who is running in the 14th) gathered with their campaign managers earlier this month to meet with Mary Isenhour at a restaurant in Robinson Township. Isenhour served as Chief of Staff for Governor Tom Wolf before stepping down last year to serve as senior advisor for his re-election campaign.

BeaverCountian.com spoke to two Democratic operatives with knowledge of the meeting who revealed Isenhour had arrived with Veon in tow. The politicos agreed to speak on condition they not be identified by name.

Veon, formerly of Beaver Falls, served 22 years in the Legislature before losing re-election in 2006. He was found guilty in 2010 and sentenced to six to 14 years in prison for using taxpayer resources for political campaigns. In 2012, he was sentenced to another one to four years for misusing state grants to the nonprofit Beaver Initiative for Growth (BIG), which he co-founded. Veon was paroled in 2015 after serving five years in prison — his conviction on conflict-of-interest charges in the BIG case was later overturned by the state Supreme Court.

Terri Mitko said she was surprised to see Veon arrive at her meeting with Mary Isenhour this month. “I did not know he was going to be there beforehand.”

Mitko said Veon stepped out while the rest of the group met about their campaigns, but came back in following their discussions.

“He came back in and said hello, shook hands with me and Amy (Fazio), and he said on behalf of the state Democratic party he appreciated the work we were doing on our campaigns,” said Mitko. “It would appear he’s working with them but I don’t know what his role is … I did not ask for or accept any help from him.”

The two Democratic operatives who first told BeaverCountian.com about the meeting say Mike Veon and Amy Fazio had a more lengthy one-on-one discussion following the strategy session, which Mitko also confirmed.

“I am not involved with her campaign,” said Mitko. “I do not know what they discussed.”

Amy Fazio told BeaverCountian.com she also did not ask for, and was not offered, assistance with her campaign from Veon.

“I agreed to meet with Governor Wolf’s campaign team,” Fazio said. “Mike Veon made an appearance and I exchanged pleasantries with him just like Terri. I just happened to go second speaking with him is all.”

Fazio said her exchange with Veon was short and he will not be involved in her campaign. “I am working hard to run my full-on grassroots campaign strategy.”

Beaver County Democratic Committee Chairman Stephen Dupree said he has no idea what Mike Veon is up to, but he has no formal involvement in local party politics.

“He is no way involved with the Beaver County Democratic Committee,” said Dupree. “I have too many other things to worry about than some guy who is not even living in Beaver County. He is what he is, he is a lightning rod … I am aware of what he is and we don’t have any official or unofficial relationship at all.”

Dupree said he was in attendance at the meeting with Mitko and Fazio when Veon showed.

“He was in no way involved in the strategy meeting,” insisted Dupree, who said his only communication with Veon that day was to extend a cordial greeting. Dupree confirmed that Veon arrived together in the same vehicle with Isenhour, but said Veon got a soda and occupied himself elsewhere on the phone while the rest of the group talked.

“We were meeting with Mary (Isenhour), she is helping (Governor Wolf) find candidates who would be friendly to his agenda and who are viable. I think it’s exciting that Governor Wolf is looking at Terri and Amy and thinking they have a possibility of coming to the state house. I think it’s exciting he wants to play in Beaver County.”

Dupree had a conversation with Wolf at a recent fundraiser in the county, and said he expressed interest in helping local Democrats do well in November’s elections.

“Terri and Amy are working really hard,” said Dupree. “They are raising money, they are getting their message out by knocking on doors, making phone calls, sending out postcards, and doing all of the things they need to do.”

Veon appears to have become increasingly involved in Beaver County politics since his release from prison, including behind-the-scenes efforts in support of then-Common Pleas Judge Deborah Kunselman’s successful candidacy for State Superior Court Judge.

As previously reported by BeaverCountian.com, Veon recently attended a private meeting with Republican Commissioner Dan Camp and Democratic Commissioner Tony Amadio about a proposed casino — a meeting meant to be kept so under wraps that Camp and Amadio were made to sign non-disclosure agreements before participating. Veon was at the meeting on behalf of local developer Pat Nardelli, father-in-law of former county solicitor Joseph Askar — who was also present at the meeting in his capacity as attorney for the Beaver County Economic Development Authority. The BCEDA may consider helping to float a bond to fund development of the project.

Mike Veon could not be reached for comment and did not return a message left by BeaverCountian.com on his cellphone voicemail.

See Also:

In-Depth: Veon Attends Private Meeting About Possible Beaver County Casino – Faces Deposition About A Prior Failed Casino Venture

Investigative Report: Camp & Amadio Signed Nondisclosure Agreements – Met Privately With Veon & DeNaples About Casino Project

Beaver County Democratic Party Fractures Further After Mike Veon Makes Featured Appearance At Annual Picnic

Democratic Chairman Gentile Calls Veon Courageous – Touts Trombetta’s Job Creation – Defends David Relationship

John Paul
John Paul is the founder of the Beaver Countian. He reports full-time for the site, specializing in investigative journalism with an emphasis on public corruption.

28 COMMENTS

  1. “He is no way involved with the Beaver County Democratic Committee,” said Dupree.

    Question, the same week that the criminal Mike go out of prison, why did the Beaver County Democrats throw a big party at Brady’s Run Park Lodge? With Veon there? If Democrats ever wants to come back strong in BC, they better stay as far as they can from Veon, and stop all these secret meetings. All it shows is all of you, up to and including Governor Wolfe is part of the swamp… didn’t he also Support the Mayor of Aliquippa?

    They are a real joke? Why even be cordial? Must believe he might come in handy someday?

    #voterepublican2018

     
    • @Bcshithole… you are correct that Wolf supported Dwan Walker. Not only did he support him he appointed this idiot to a committee right in the midst of this huge corruption investigation. It was also AFTER ole Deewan refused to cooperate in that investigation.

       
      • I don’t have time to keep up on all the crime in BC, but I try to read J.P’s articles. I throught I seen that on the Aliquippa mayor. Shame on them. Also I was hiking in Brady’s Run the day of that party. Pictures with Veon, appeared to something to be proud of! I wish I had everyone’s film from that day!

         
  2. Anytime I see or hear Veon involved, my Oh Shit! Meter registers. I would think no one would align themselves with such slime.

     
  3. Like a heroin addict whose first item of business upon discharge from rehab is buying a dime bag and shooting up, Veon’s first item of business upon parole from prison is attending meetings trying to weasel his way back into the machinery of political corruption.

    Quite frankly, I would trust the heroin addict long before I would ever trust Veon.

     
  4. he should be banned from attending political dealing and anybody that associates with him should have a pox on them. he should still be in jail.

     
  5. There goes my vote. They meet with someone like Veon and plead innocent of being connected with him. If they don’t know what kind of political hacks they are associating with, then they are too stupid for elected office. I read that Veon said he is a lobbyist. So….he will be everywhere from now on. Wolfe and Veon and mayor Dewan. Same old same old is what we get from the Democrats.

     
  6. Why be cordial…he should have been informed that he is not welcomed. How is it that no official is keeping tabs on this guy..his involvement with the proposed casino, edging back into county politics and I am sure with the full blessing of the two commissioners.

     
  7. Drug dealers burglars bank robbers all felons like Veon. Meet with them too shake there hands. At least they have more integrity than Veon. He is Beaver Counties homegrown snake in the grass.

     
  8. It stretches credulity to think that Mitko & Fazio didn’t know about Veon’s involvement. C’mon who goes to a political meeting without knowing who the guest of honor is? Utter bullshit – those two must think Beaver County voters are stupid.

     
  9. Mitko is an attorney. Attorney’s are well trained in twisting the truth. Why would anyone believe she had no knowledge of who was attending. Don’t get suckerd in to Veon’s web. Mitko and Fazio both knew what was going on well before they ever showed up for this meeting.

     
  10. I believe they didn’t know Veon was to attend the meeting. All of their efforts have been local, grass roots, but what the hell is Wolfe’s office doing aligning with Veon and Askar? They must be totally unaware of the optics or just want the money.

     
  11. He’s not a lightning rod. He’s a lier and a thief. He stole public tax money, got convicted for it, then he cost us more to keep him in prison. Veon and Jerry LaValle are like terminal cancer.

     
  12. Mitko & Fazio’s bid for election will go in the toilet with Veon hanging around their necks. Maybe Veon is working in conjunction with whoever is running against them.

     
  13. Mary Isenhour, campaign manager came, in same car, with no other then Mike Veon. Don’t tell me they didn’t know. Plus she is working with Governor Wolfe on his Campaign!
    Don’t be fooled, the Democratic swamp runs deep in PA.
    I was one of those Democratic for 40 years I am done. It’s time to give the Republicans a chance!

    Plus, all these Democratic far left liberals drive me crazy, they just need to go to their safe place and never return!

     
  14. It’s not a Democrat thing, it’s a Beaver County thing. There have been/are people in Beaver County that never seem to be put aside, whether they win elections or lose, whether they are fired from jobs, resign, go to jail etc., etc., etc. You see it in everything from sports organizations, to business, to local government, school boards, etc. If you think that this would be cured by voting straight Republican like the county used to vote straight Democrat, get used to the same old shit with a new cast of characters.

     
  15. Mitko and Fazio are learning fast..the first trait that a politician must have is to become an expert liar.

     
  16. HAHAHHAHAHAHHAHA! Who believes Veon shows up just to exchange pleasantries? You 2 ladies couldn’t come up with something better than that?

     
  17. yep he is dirty but the orange piece of shit has done waaaaaaaayyy more harm than mike veon and all the snotgoblin inbreds sit silent

     
  18. My goodness, can any of you Trump morons spell? The fact is that Mr. Veon did more for your county then anyone. You should erect a statue and genuflect daily before it. Did you miss the part of the innuendo laden story about his “BIG” conviction being overturned?

     
  19. This is a depressing story. What this proves is that there are no ‘good’ candidates to choose from. You get the corrupt Democratic candidates (Mitko/Fazio with Veon in the background), or you get the corrupt Republican candidates (Kail/Marshall with Askar in the background). All that’s left to do is pick a write-in name. A write-in won’t win, but I won’t be a part of any of these people being in office.

     

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