Northampton manager: email to township employees inappropriate
Friday, October 11, 2013 6:30 am | Updated: 2:59 pm, Fri Oct 11, 2013.
By Chris English Staff Writer
Source: “Northampton manager: email to township employees inappropriate.” Bucks County Courier Times. Friday 11 Oct. 2013. ‹http://www.buckscountycouriertimes.com/news/local/northampton-manager-email-to-township-employees-inappropriate/article_e3d6de70-3ad5-5cea-ad55-03088481d617.html ›
An election-related email sent by township Republican Tony Albano to Northampton Township employees at their work email addresses crosses the line between politics and township business, township Manager Robert Pellegrino said.
Albano is chairman of the Board of Directors for the Northampton Bucks County Municipal Authority, which provides public water and sewer service to township residents. He said the email, which has a link to a guest opinion published in the newspaper by township Republican and former Supervisor Vince Deon and directs recipients to read the guest opinion, was sent to township employees by mistake.
“Hit the wrong key,” Albano said in an email to the newspaper. “Ten years on planning commission and I hit the wrong list. I apologized.”
Deon’s guest opinion is critical of Democatic Supervisors Frank Rothermel and James Cunningham, who are running for re-election Nov. 5 against Republican challengers Barry Moore and Larry Weinstein.
Among other claims, the guest opinion said Rothermel’s and Cunningham’s campaign literature is misleading and “misrepresents their accomplishments.”
While Rothermel, Cunningham and fellow Democratic Supervisor Kimberly Rose all said Albano’s sending of the email to township employees warrants a criminal investigation, Northampton police Chief Michael Clark said he disagreed.
“We are not investigating Mr. Albano since no crime was committed,” said Clark.
“I do want to point out that it was not a crime to send the email,” added Pellegrino. “My concern was in keeping the administration out of the politics at the board level.”
However, Pellegrino did send a sternly worded email back to Albano warning him against sending similar emails to township employees in the future.
“I am not sure what you were thinking when you sent this email to township employees but it was totally inappropriate,” Pellegrino told Albano. “While our employees may have their own private political views, they are not to be directly or indirectly involved in our local elections. We work for the board majority, whoever they may be, and for all residents of the township regardless of political affiliation. Your email created an unnecessary and unwarranted diversion from our responsibility in providing prompt and appropriate public service and it created discord and concern in the workforce.”