Here’s a list of our candidates in this year’s local elections:
Murph Wysocki – Running At-Large http://murphwysocki.com/
Occupation: Commercial real estate attorney
Personal: Married, one daughter, has lived in the Deepdale neighborhood of Tredyffrin for 36 years.
Qualifications: “I have the experience to make economic revitalization a reality. As a commercial real estate attorney with more than 35 years of experience in structuring and closing large transactions, I understand project budgets, complex financing, and what it takes to bring people together, and get things done.
Statements/Goals: “As your supervisor, I would strive to bring vision, leadership, and the determination to move ahead on long-delayed plans and projects. I believe that our supervisors must lead to expand the tax base through economic revitalization. Tredyffrin is ripe for smart development of its existing commercial areas, starting with the long stalled Paoli transportation/town center project. Redevelopment of dated commercial spaces can improve tax stability, enhance property values, and create a vibrant, pedestrian-friendly Paoli for all Tredyffrin taxpayers. Redevelopment can mean new life for Chesterbrook’s shopping center area and, with Easttown, a reinvigorated Berwyn. Economic revitalization means more local retailers and restaurants–amenities that will help make Tredyffrin an even more attractive place to live and work. Tredyffrin taxpayers deserve better.
Mark Freed – Running At-Large http://markfreed2013.com/
Personal: Married with three children
Qualifications: “I have worked as both a Government attorney and in private practice for over 20 years. I served as counsel to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and as a prosecutor in the Attorney General’s Environmental Crimes Section. I understand the needs of law enforcement and law enforcement officers. In private practice, I have represented both municipalities and developers, addressing issues related to development and the environment. I understand the economic realities of the developers as well as the disastrous results that can occur if infrastructure, quality of life and environmental issues are not taken into account.”
Statement/Goals: I support sound fiscal management driven by Smart Growth. We can broaden our tax base by bringing more business to Tredyffrin, rather than by raising taxes on individual homeowners. I am committed to our community’s public safety. We have one of the best police forces in the State and cannot allow its numbers to decline while threats are on the increase. If elected, I will assure that the present plan to change Commercial Zoning in the Township is done in a way to both promote economic growth and assure that proper infrastructure and environmental protections are in place. I will work to assure that we have a well-managed, affordable, safe and livable community, and to bring balance to the Board of Supervisors.
Tredyffrin Supervisor, Middle District: (for Democrats living in precincts M1,M3, M4, M5, M6, M7 and W-4)
Laurie Elliott http://laurie2013.com/
Occupation: Accounting and data management professional
Qualifications: “I bring over twenty years of experience working as an accounting and data management professional, with an MBA from Widener University. Both have prepared me to exercise sound fiscal management as a Supervisor. I have been active in numerous community activities, including Townwatch, the Turnpike Design Roundtable representing the Glenhardie neighborhood, and the Trout Creek Zoning Ordinance Working Group. I have served as an elected Committeeperson for the past 4 years. Also, I am a member and past president of the Glen Valley Garden Club and a trained Pennsylvania Forest Steward.
Statement/Goals:“ I have lived in Tredyffrin for 25 years and love the quality of life it has provided my family. But I am concerned about the Township’s decline in services in recent years. I believe our tax dollars can be better spent and our township better managed. I am running for office to represent all residents and help put in place the improvements we wish to have.
In my view, Tredyffrin deserves better government than it has had, including:
§ Better communication between residents and elected officials: Residents need to know about proposed changes and have their voices heard and respected in public discussions. I would like to implement a communications plan that delivers news about issues in a timely way.
§ A greater focus on the needs of our police department: It now operates at below the recommended number of police officers for a township of our size. As a long-time member of the Townwatch Board of Directors, I support increasing the number of police officers to the 43-45 recommended by experts in a recent report.
§ Real stormwater relief: The dangerous conditions and property damage caused by recurring flooding are negatively affecting our property values. I will make sure the current stormwater laws are enforced and that the Township investigates new stormwater control methods and projects.
§ Better road and park maintenance and expanded access to our libraries
§ Smart economic development that will expand our tax base and help pay for better services
We need balance on the Board of Supervisors, which is all Republican. One- party rule leads to doing things the way they have always been done. Our community deserves a balance of views and perspectives reflecting those of our residents.
Tredyffrin-Easttown School Board Directors:
Kevin Buraks (incumbent), Region 1 http://www.kevinburaks.com
In Region 1, Kevin Buraks is the incumbent and serves as the current school board president. He was elected by a unanimous board vote in December 2012. Buraks chairs the Board’s policy and personnel committees. “Being on the school board has been a great opportunity for community service,” Buraks said. “There are things that have to get done and the district has to move forward. It’s challenging, and in some ways more challenging than my paid job.” A bankruptcy and tax collections attorney, he chairs his firm’s Litigation Department and has practiced law for 18 years. He is a volunteer attorney for the Montgomery Child Advocacy Project, where he represents children who have been the victims of abuse or neglect.
Kevin is married and has three children in the District.
Buraks is cross-filed and appears on both the Republican and Democratic ballots (as do all Tredyffrin school board candidates).
Scott Dorsey, Region 2 http://www.scottcdorsey.com
Scott Dorsey has over 25 years of experience as a pastor, administrator, teacher and coach. He has a track record of leading non-profit organizations to financial stability. For the past 9 years he has served as pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church of Holmesburg. He also serves as a program coordinator for an agency that recruits foster parents. Prior to joining the ministry he taught middle school, worked as a G.E.D. instructor and supervised after-school programs in Philadelphia. Dorsey is running to change the negative tone of politics locally and to stop cuts that threaten the District’s high academic standards. Also, he said he strongly opposes the outsourcing of any district staff.
“I am totally against that, because I think it will degrade our great educational system,” Dorsey said. “As a resident of Tredyffrin, I stand firmly against any proposal that would outsource the jobs of my fellow neighbors. I truly believe there is an assault on those who have no union representation and it is time for our community to let its voice be heard.
I am saddened by the latest actions of our school board. The board has lost its way in giving our top administrators a sweet pay increase and retirement bonus while pushing paraprofessionals out to the lowest outsourcer bid. I understand the board struggles to find financial opportunities to keep the school district solvent, but do we stoop to tactics of harassing nonprofit organizations by questioning their tax status or attempting to tear down neighborhood popular tennis courts? Do we discard loyal and valued employees who contribute to our students’ success?
Why are they making these decisions without the full input of the community? Where is the transparency?
Government can’t solve all the problems on its own, but Tredyffrin has been a community where people of all backgrounds can raise their families and provide their children a great education. In recent years our educational system has come under attack. It is time to have public meetings and hear the voices of our neighbors before making decisions that will radically change the character of our schools.
Outsourcing will not save the district money or be a better deal for aides and paraprofessionals, as some School Board members have suggested. I beg my friends on the Board to listen to the people. It is time to focus on investing, not slashing the greatness of our community. I ask all my neighbors to come to the school board meeting on Monday night to oppose the outsourcing of our educational system. Let us fight to protect those who are oppressed. May God bless us to find the right solutions that will preserve a great school district by investing in its children and valued employees.”
Scott is a 19 year resident of Wayne where he lives with his wife Debbie and their 2 children -one a graduate of CHS and the other a sophomore there.
He is cross-filed as a Region 2 candidate, as are Kevin Buraks (Region 1) and both of their opponents.