My phone rings off the hook, here are some random things from my journalist’s notebook!


Camping

Beaver County Chairman Dan Camp officially announced his Republican campaign for re-election during a private party held this month for family, friends, and supporters. The event at Center Stage featured live entertainment, adult beverages, and a red carpet style photo-op with Chairman Camp — glitzy backdrop included.

According to my sources who were in attendance, about 200 people showed for the festivities (the Camp campaign officially pegs attendance at 250, so in that ballpark).

Among those who were not at Camp’s party was fellow Republican Commissioner Sandie Egley, who has already announced she will not be seeking re-election next year.

If Camp’s kickoff event was designed to help create an air of inevitability for his re-election efforts, it seems to be working. At least for now.

The only name that’s been widely circulating among Republicans so far as a possible contender is Jack Manning, who currently serves as Beaver County Chamber of Commerce President. Manning (who previously ran for commissioner as an independent back in 2011) has been dipping his big toe in the political waters again for some time, but so far seems reluctant to jump in.

Sheriff Tony Guy (left) with Chairman Dan Camp / photo via Camp’s Facebook page

A Look Behind The Times

I happened to notice something interesting during my examination of the latest county campaign finance reports: a $400 donation from attorney Bernie Rabik to Democratic Commissioner Tony Amadio’s re-election campaign.

As you may remember, attorney Bernie previously served as Chief County Solicitor until February 2016, when an investigative report by BeaverCountian.com revealed he had been using resources from his public office for his private practice. Commissioners Camp and Egley voted to fire Rabik, although his long-time friend Democratic Commissioner Tony Amadio was opposed to the termination.

While BeaverCountian.com reported extensively on the matter, the Beaver County Times never did clue their readers into the actual reasons why Bernie was ousted. Interestingly enough, the newspaper soon after hired him to write a weekly column for them.

Bernie has used his voice in “Ask Attorney Bernie” to take occasional shots at political foes; he has been using his own funds to help fund Amadio’s re-election efforts while writing about the Board of Commissioners.

Commissioner Tony Amadio’s latest campaign finance report / photo by John Paul

The newspaper has of course disclosed none of this when publishing Bernie’s writings, leaving their readers blind to the propaganda they are consuming.

Take a look at this bit of awesomeness from Bernie’s October 26 column, which purports to see him answering questions submitted by readers:

“Question: Some people believe corruption is rampant in government, including Beaver County government. What is corruption exactly?”

Bernie Rabik: “Political or government corruption refers to the abuse of power by the upper tier of government officials to obtain and amass private favors and riches for personal gain. Abuse of power with another intention is not government corruption … I know of no such example of corruption in Beaver County government. As reported in The Times, county Commissioner Sandie Egley has made uncorroborated claims of a ‘wildfire of corruption in this courthouse.'”

I should note Bernie’s column for that week was published under the headline, “Doing the right thing” (totally awesome).

Attorney Bernie used the same column to criticize county commissioners for continued fighting against reassessment (coincidentally, Commissioner Amadio has spoken out in opposition to additional appeals in the matter). Mind you, Bernie previously worked as the county’s attorney on that very case.

Sorry, I just can’t stop quoting Bernie… the attorney.

“Beaver County government must always do what is right, be fierce antagonists of corruption and paragons of ferocious honesty.”

He can use as many fancy phrases as he likes, but there just ain’t no maskin’ what’s goin’ on with that column of his.

(Now would be a good time to go reread an editorial published by BeaverCountian.com in March: History Will Judge The Beaver County Times Harshly.)


Asleep Behind The Wheel

Now something positive to say about my colleagues over at the Beaver County Times. While they may be metaphorically asleep behind the wheel, at least they aren’t LITERALLY sleeping.

A reporter for WBVP radio disrupted a Commissioners’ work session earlier this month when he fell asleep during the meeting and began snoring — loudly — until it ended.

The racket (and it was a racket) caused notable disruptions, including several members of the board unconsciously smiling as they were being addressed with complaints by members of the public (which did not go over very well with their constituents).

WBVP reporter sleeping during public meeting.

Bringin Home The Bacon

Wondering how Commissioner Camp came up with the cash to pay for that fancy wallpaper he was taking pictures in front of at his kickoff party? Look no further than local developer Pat Nardelli, who ponied up a whopping $5,000 for Camp during the last reporting period.

You may remember Nardelli from the private meeting he brought Mike Veon to about the proposed casino in Beaver County that was attended by Commissioners Camp and Amadio.

You may also recognize him as the father-in-law of attorney Joseph Askar, who was recently hired by Camp and Amadio to serve as solicitor for Children & Youth Services despite not being the pick of the agency’s director.

I’m not seeing any big checks on Amadio’s latest campaign report. Maybe next time?

Commissioner Dan Camp’s campaign finance report / photo by John Paul

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.

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RavenJohn Q TaxpayerRAVEN CHICKEN LITTLEwhat the fWise Owl Recent comment authors
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Cumberland Gap
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Cumberland Gap

Same old, same old, time to change dance partners. Thanks JP

fatass.jpg
John Q Taxpayer
Member
John Q Taxpayer

Anyone that runs against Camp or Amadio is guaranteed by a landslide.

John Q Taxpayer
Member
John Q Taxpayer

Now is anybody’s chance to be a County Commissioner. All you have to do is sign up and get your name on the ballot. You won’t even have to spend any money on a campaign because the names Camp and Amadio is now political poison, along with all the other bums that are in there now.

Wise Owl
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Wise Owl

They both will easily win reelection. Beaver County voters hate change, they will vote Straight Ticket or name recognition. No Tax Increase will be their mantra and with college graduation in few months, plenty of courthouse family members “qualified” for courthouse positions upon graduation..non family members (tax payers) need not apply…not qualified.

what the f
Guest
what the f

you are probably correct wise owl. I read the story about the budget in the Times and there is no mention of future shortfalls, only Amadio’s assurances that he is doing all he can to avoid a tax increase. Our hero! So f’n disgusting and total lies to mislead the public

Raven
Member
Raven

The slumbering papa bear dozing in his too-small bed appears to be none other than Matthew Drzik, host of AM Beaver County At WBVP/WMBA. (Too sleepy to even pronounce his guest’s name when interviewing her — Holly Vogt. Yep, them’s four tough letters in her German surname. But, VOT it’s NOT.) I can only assume, though, that Conehead and Sleeper were speaking at the time. So, for that, you are forgiven. Actually, if the photo were wider, it would show the rest of the audience sleeping too.

Tornie Bernie. Asking yourself questions? What can I say? Lying about double dipping to get yourself fired, and now ghost-writing phony write-in questions from nonexistent readers. Almost as exciting as Marcia Keefer finding a new backyard Woolly Worm collection to visit on Leopard Lane.

And the names of the Beaver County Organized Crime Trojan Horse Venture surface again to remind us who is really involved in a new Casino. Same 10, 15 or so people, same agendas, same behind-the-scenes flim-flam. Same bullshit to con the taxpayers into thinking that there will be more tax revenues, more employment — while the sprawling Cracker Jack Plant grows by the day like a nest of hungry spiders, devouring the land and shitting filth into the air that no amount of tax break incentive money could ever get rid of or justify.

Oh, by the way, the new, huge, gleaming styrene storage canisters on the hilltop have a blast radius of about five miles. So, look out, Rochester, Baden, Ohioville, Aliquippa and everything in between. You might as well put chairs on the opposite hills to watch it happen.

But hey, this is progress, right?

RAVEN CHICKEN LITTLE
Guest
RAVEN CHICKEN LITTLE

THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING!
WOLF! WOLF!
NOT! NOT!

Raven
Member
Raven

One good lightning strike at the top of that hill, and Chicken Little won’t have to worry about anything anymore.

Raven
Member
Raven

The blast radius is not my imagining. It was part of pre-construction studies, but it can be Googled easily enough. For some real fun, check out Texas and Louisiana explosions at sister plants that wiped them off the map.

Raven
Member
Raven

On YouTube, of course.

RAVEN CHICKEN LITTLE
Guest
RAVEN CHICKEN LITTLE

Then I strongly suggest that you move out of the area. Because the cracker plant is coming and you cannot do anything about it. And the sooner, the better.

Raven
Member
Raven

What an asinine thing to say, even for you. Well, OK, evacuate the whole damn valley and caravan the emigrants to Pittsburgh. But, the rail traffic will be transporting flammable, explosive stuff too, so evacuate Coway Yards and Ohio River towns to Pittsburgh as well. Texas and Louisiana plants sit in the middle of wastelands, so why not here?

John Q Taxpayer
Member
John Q Taxpayer

When next election comes around just ask yourself…What the fuck has any of these people done for us? Then vote for the underdog, the unknown, the person that is not a politician and hasn’t been plagued by the beaver county cancer that is there now. They have no achievements to their name except for themselves, their family and their friends. They have misspent tax dollars, dodged questions, gave undeserved tax abatements and raised our taxes. You can walk into and county office or agency and be treated as if you were a stray animal invading their territory that you paid for and built. Vote them all out. They have done NOTHING for you!

Raven
Member
Raven

True, John Q. Nothing outside the daily mundane stuff of getting by to make a buck. Egley is often eclipsed by the two nerds, good people like Holly Vogt are rare. Others, like Stonewall, clog the system like bad cholesterol. Nationally, “Anyone Else” is a viable campaign slogan, and it is here, too. Thankfully, Guy gets a new flat top haircut, poses for pictures, then goes back into obscurity. That would have been a “Win” in George David days. It could be worse, but not much.