Our third question to the Luzerne County Controller candidates was a simple one.
Question 3: What is your position on home rule in Luzerne County?
DID NOT RESPOND
I support the ballot question for the Government Study Commission because I believe it is a healthy exercise in democracy and will allow citizens to determine whether our current form of government meets the needs of the citizens of Luzerne County in the current times. I believe the study commission process allows participation by voters and current officeholders to make the case to retain the current Commissioner form of government, to modify it, or to introduce a new form of government. I believe the 18 to 24 month timeframe provides a safeguard against making rash and possibly ill considered changes in reaction to a particular set of headlines or circumstances. In addition the results of the study and the recommendations of the committee require significant communication and voter approval prior to enactment. I believe this entire process is healty for government and ultimately may lead to a better, although different, form of government in the next several years.
I would oppose any change to the direct election of the office of Controller because I believe the current format provides for a level of independence. I believe the position of Controller, by its very nature, should be one that reports directly to the voters to ensure that the officeholder is always aware that he or she always reports to the voters. The appointment of a Controller, whether by a County Executive could interfere with the independence of the office and could lead to a softening of the oversight role of the office. I could not support a Home Rule charter that contained provisions for an appointed Controller, I believe the best way for the office to retain independence would be to allow the Controller to remain an office directly elected by the voters.or by a
DID NOT RESPOND
I am in favor of Home rule .
Home rule is a complicated question. The form has not yet been determined, and so it is difficult to answer. It is like asking about the new 2012 Cadillac and whether I would buy one? I couldn't possibly tell you yet, until I have driven it and seen it.