Archive for category ed pawlowski

Fed Ed Case: US Atty’s Office Should Indict Itself Next

During the primary season, about 8,000 Democrats decided to run for Allentown Mayor and enabled Edwin “Fed Ed” Pawlowski to win with just four cent of the registered Democratic voters. Though seven people had already pleaded guilty to political corruption and had implicated Fed Ed, the United States Attorney’s Office was strangely silent. Some say the office is in complete disarray, thanks to the revolving door in which prosecutors there seem to have no idea whether they are coming or going. Some say that they were licking their wounds after having their heads handed to them in a few high profile political corruption cases. Still others speculated that no indictment would be forthcoming because that might impact the election. A few even suggested that Fed Ed would never be charged.

We now that Federal prosecutors managed to find the most idiotic way to proceed in this matter. Publicly, they curled up in a ball and let Fed Ed march on to victory though they know he’s a crook and that the vast majority of Allentown voters preferred someone else. But behind the scenes, they secured pay-to-pay guilty pleas from two more businessmen and kept the public in the dark. Heaven forbid that the public be told the truth. Their dishonest inaction impacted the primary election in a far more negative way than if they had just done their jobs and indicted when ready.

The Morning Call provided some of the details yesterday. The new charges are against Mark Neisser, a glorified salesman armed with a briefcase and cellphone who was employed by T and M Associates; and Patrick Regan, a glorified salesman who is also armed with a law degree and who works for TEN. Neisser has been charged with a single count of conspiracy to commit bribery, while Regan has admitted to a conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.

Both charging documents are based on information that is now years old and has been collecting dust.

Behind closed doors, an information was filed and sealed against Neisser on March 13. He entered his guilty plea on April 6. Earlier this month, the feds quietly unsealed the record with no notice to the public.

For Regan, an information was filed and sealed on May 11, just four days prior to the primary. It was unsealed after the election, on June 14, and he only entered his plea On June 20, with no notice to the public.

What I find especially troublesome, in both of these informations, is the lack of a direct link to Fed Ed.

Neissen is charged with bribing former Mayor Vaughn Spencer, who like Fed Ed is still walking around as though nothing has happened. But in his case, the information includes statements that Spencer made, like “I cleared [a specific engineering contract] for [defendant MARK NEISSER’s engineering firm]. So we need to get something from them,” and “I went out of my way for [defendant MARK NEISSER’s firm] . . . [T]hat project, they weren’t even, they were, they were already ruled out. . . . And I got them back in there and got them approved.”

There is none of that for Fed Ed. Instead we are told that he acted through intermediaries like Francis Dougherty and Miked Fleck, whose credibility can be easily attacked. There are no juicy quotes, indicating either a very weak case on these counts or a terrible job of drawing up the charging documents.

While Fed Ed was publicly proclaiming his innocence and asking, “What cloud?”, the Feds were depriving you, the public, of the right to their honest services. Maybe they should charge themselves next.

Their disregard of the public is shameful and should be brought to the attention of the courts when the seek the next round of sentencing continuances.

Mark Neissen Information

Patrick Regan Information

Fed Ed Case: US Atty’s Office Should Indict Itself Next

During the primary season, about 8,000 Democrats decided to run for Allentown Mayor and enabled Edwin “Fed Ed” Pawlowski to win with just four cent of the registered Democratic voters. Though seven people had already pleaded guilty to political corruption and had implicated Fed Ed, the United States Attorney’s Office was strangely silent. Some say the office is in complete disarray, thanks to the revolving door in which prosecutors there seem to have no idea whether they are coming or going. Some say that they were licking their wounds after having their heads handed to them in a few high profile political corruption cases. Still others speculated that no indictment would be forthcoming because that might impact the election. A few even suggested that Fed Ed would never be charged.

We now that Federal prosecutors managed to find the most idiotic way to proceed in this matter. Publicly, they curled up in a ball and let Fed Ed march on to victory though they know he’s a crook and that the vast majority of Allentown voters preferred someone else. But behind the scenes, they secured pay-to-pay guilty pleas from two more businessmen and kept the public in the dark. Heaven forbid that the public be told the truth. Their dishonest inaction impacted the primary election in a far more negative way than if they had just done their jobs and indicted when ready.

The Morning Call provided some of the details yesterday. The new charges are against Mark Neisser, a glorified salesman armed with a briefcase and cellphone who was employed by T and M Associates; and Patrick Regan, a glorified salesman who is also armed with a law degree and who works for TEN. Neisser has been charged with a single count of conspiracy to commit bribery, while Regan has admitted to a conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.

Both charging documents are based on information that is now years old and has been collecting dust.

Behind closed doors, an information was filed and sealed against Neisser on March 13. He entered his guilty plea on April 6. Earlier this month, the feds quietly unsealed the record with no notice to the public.

For Regan, an information was filed and sealed on May 11, just four days prior to the primary. It was unsealed after the election, on June 14, and he only entered his plea On June 20, with no notice to the public.

What I find especially troublesome, in both of these informations, is the lack of a direct link to Fed Ed.

Neissen is charged with bribing former Mayor Vaughn Spencer, who like Fed Ed is still walking around as though nothing has happened. But in his case, the information includes statements that Spencer made, like “I cleared [a specific engineering contract] for [defendant MARK NEISSER’s engineering firm]. So we need to get something from them,” and “I went out of my way for [defendant MARK NEISSER’s firm] . . . [T]hat project, they weren’t even, they were, they were already ruled out. . . . And I got them back in there and got them approved.”

There is none of that for Fed Ed. Instead we are told that he acted through intermediaries like Francis Dougherty and Miked Fleck, whose credibility can be easily attacked. There are no juicy quotes, indicating either a very weak case on these counts or a terrible job of drawing up the charging documents.

While Fed Ed was publicly proclaiming his innocence and asking, “What cloud?”, the Feds were depriving you, the public, of the right to their honest services. Maybe they should charge themselves next.

Their disregard of the public is shameful and should be brought to the attention of the courts when the seek the next round of sentencing continuances.

Mark Neissen Information

Patrick Regan Information

Term limit for Allentown mayor heads back to ballot, report says

Allentown City Council reportedly overrode Mayor Ed Pawlowski’s veto of a referendum for a new two-term cap.

A referendum on term limits for the Allentown mayor is reportedly back on track for the November general election.

City council on Wednesday voted to override sitting Mayor Ed Pawlowski’s veto of a measure putting the question of term limits for mayor before voters, The Morning Call reports.

Council had voted unanimously June 7 to ask voters to approve a two-term limit for the mayor.

Pawlowski said Tuesday the referendum unfairly targets the mayor, arguing the ballot question should apply to city council and the city controller.

Council President Ray O’Connell invited Pawlowski to collect signatures for a counter referendum, The Morning Call reported.

Wednesday’s vote was unanimous, with Councilwoman Cynthia Mota absent, according to the report.

Pawlowski bested six other candidates to take the Democratic nomination for mayor in last month’s primary, and he would go on to a fourth term in office if he beats Republican challenger Nat Hyman in the Nov. 7 general election.

Pawlowski’s third term has been beset by a federal pay-to-play investigation in which several city officials have pleaded guilty to various criminal charges related to a scheme where city contracts were awarded in exchange for campaign contributions.

More guilty pleas in Allentown pay-to-play probe

Pawlowski has been implicated, but he has not been charged and has maintained his innocence.

Kurt Bresswein may be reached at kbresswein@lehighvalleylive.com. Follow him on Twitter @KurtBresswein. Find lehighvalleylive.com on Facebook.

Allentown mayor: City council needs term limits, too

Ed Pawlowski said in a news release that city council and the controller should also be considered for term limits.

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski. (lehighvalleylive.com file photo…

Airbnb battle brewing in Bethlehem Historic District (PHOTOS)

Airbnb, the popular house and room rental service, is raising questions for Lehigh Valley city leaders.

After 30 combined years living in Bethlehem’s Historic District, Jay Brew …

Fed Ed Tries Bully Tactics on Eugene McDuffie

I’ve told you before that Allentown City Council needs cops, not criminals. I feel reassured knowing that former police chief Roger MacLean is on Council. The same goes for Daryl Hendricks, a former Captain. He has Fed Ed’s number and most certainly d…

Fed Ed is Having a Fundraiser

Allentown mayor Edwin “Fed Ed ” Pawlowski is having a fundraiser next week. You can get in for $100. hat’s a Yugo supporter. The entire Allentown office of the FBI has already signed up.

Would You Like a Fed Ed Yard Sign?

Yesterday, a friend sent me a notice for Fed Ed yard signs. I was going to post it here, but then designed my own. If you’d like your own yard sign, please leave your name and email address in a comment here. (Only I will see it). Once I have 25 orders…

Allentown’s Former DCED Director Claims Fed Ed Corrupt

Betsy Morris Levin is an 18-year veteran of the City of Allentown who resigned as Director of Community and Economic Development in 2007. She considered that her “dream job.” Prior to that, she ran the Burau of Recycling and Solid Waste. Ten years afte…

Racine Invites, Then Disinvites Fed Ed

On February 17, Allentown Mayor Edwin “Fed Ed” Pawlowski’s publicly paid propagandist issued a news release proudly announcing that ha had been invited to Racine, Wisconsin. That city is considering building its own arena and hotel, and Fed Ed was going to share his pearls of wisdom. Thanks to their local newspaper, the Journal Times, he’s been disinvited as fast as a judge’s tipstaff can say, “All rise.”

That newspaper did what some newspapers still do. It checked and learned that not only is Fed Ed himself under investigation for political corruption but six people around him have already enter guilty pleas to little things like bribery, lying to the FBI and bid-rigging. Three of those involved were city employees. One was his former campaign manager, who was also a business “consultant” to those who wanted to do business in Allentown.

“When you talk about a person who’s credible, in his case, he’s incredible,” Hendricks told the Journal Times. “He’s one of the least transparent, open and honest politicians I’ve ever met.”

“The investigation has been going on for almost two years and there’s been no charges filed against me,” Fed Ed told the Wisconsin paper. “I’m running for my fourth term as mayor and we’re getting good response.”

After that story broke, Racine Mayor John Dickert pulled the plug on Pawlowski’s trip. “It was very disheartening how quickly the purpose of (Mayor Pawlowski’s) visit and presentation turned into political mudslinging,” he said in a dig at what he called the “hometown” paper. The integrity and economic benefit of this project is too important to allow it to be politicized.”

Rickert obviously failed to look into Fed Ed before inviting him. Given this lack of due diligence on his part, I question what effort he’s really put into an arena project.

And that’snot political.