Saturday, June 9, 2012

Letter To The Editor

The following is a letter to the editor of the Express Times by our spokesperson Rev. Mario Martinez on 06/09/12:

Newspaper refuses to report the whole story

It is sad that our media in the Lehigh Valley is so slanted. Consider that whenever people such as ousted Northampton County Councilman Ron Angle or County Executive John Stoffa play up to the media, they get headlines.

However, when we have a historic moment, such as the collection of 23,000-plus signatures to put a question on the ballot, and the signatures are verified, and the question survives four lawsuits, and the question is placed on the ballot, and the question passes by a 3-1 margin, there are no victorious headlines! Why?

The media, as I understand it, is supposed to stay neutral in reporting any story, but not in the Lehigh Valley, where the media plays favorites. It is evident that they took a side, and it was not the side of the people. But that’s OK because the people were not seeking publicity, they were seeking justice.

Today, the media again is showing their slant, failing to report on a possible scandal that may remove the county executive from office. The act of using taxpayers’ funds to further personal goals is illegal, and has resulted in the incarceration of people such as state legislators Jane Orie, Bill DeWeese and John Perzel.

Evidence has been provided to the county controller and county council which clearly shows Stoffa used taxpayer money to sue the taxpayers, and worst, to support two private citizens in private litigation. But in the Lehigh Valley, the media have purposely chosen to suppress the story. Why?
Take Note: People don’t buy a biased media!
Forks Township

EDITOR’S NOTE: We have reported on this issue. In August 2011 a judge refused lawyer Lawrence Otter’s request to have his legal fees paid by local blogger Bernie O’Hare and Angle, who had challenged the validity of signatures on a petition for a referendum on Gracedale, the county nursing home. Otter alleges “illegal government funding” of the pair’s petition challenges, saying they received help from Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, a law firm retained by the county to handle a proposed sale of the home. Stoffa, Angle and O’Hare deny that accusation.


Also read the comments. MORE TO COME ON THIS ISSUE...STAY TUNED.


  1. 1. The Express Times has a reporter with all of the necessary and current info on hand.
    2. Everything that the paper uses as a disclaimer is almost a year old.
    3.Does the paper really believe that the Harrisburg law firm is going to admit their errors?
    4. I suggest that the "unbiased" newspaper read what their own reporter has on hand and report what they read to their subscribers,THE PEOPLE,

  2. The weird thing is the Express focuses on Otter's lawsuit to get his fees reimbursed but can't look at the issue of misappropriated county funds as a separate issue unto itself. Lets take Otter out of the equation, the bottom line is that the county allowed or ordered a private vendor to assist private citizens in a private lawsuit against other private citizens of the county. That help was financed by county tax money, or state or federal tax money. At the end of the day "that is the story".

    Stoffa has admitted he did it but claims County Council was ok with it. County Council has remained silent but I believe they should go on record as to whether or not they meant that hiring a law firm to work out the sale of Gracedale, included diverting services to private individuals in civil matters. If the answer is yes, the County Council is at fault, if the answer is no, Stoffa overstepped his power. Either way it should never have happened. Some one is accountable.

    O'Hare has admitted he received help form the law firm. There is correspondence from the law firm corroborating this fact. In a weird turn of fate the only silent partner in this possible conspiracy is Ron Angle. The usually bellicose one is very quiet. As the master of dirty tricks, he knows full well this is a land mine waiting to be stepped on.

    The sad thing is neither paper wanted to touch this story. They have shown their political stripes throughout the Stoffa tenure. Both papers bet on him heavily in his first and second elections. They were practically in kind contributors to him. They have held him up as the closest thing to God in public office. They will not let people know they were wrong.

    This is a big story and the COAF has every right to be upset. Maybe a Phila. based news outlet or national would run with it. The local media has for the above stated reasons or another, signed off on this potential; misuse of taxpayer money.

    guy lawyer.

  3. Thank you "guy lawyer", this post should be sent to every news organization in the state. As well as the major national outlets.

    Not only will it help expose the corruption in Northampton County but the corruption in our local media.