Councilman Callahan to Mayor Donchez: “Stop hiding . . . Do your job”

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Tip o’ the hat to a follower who pointed out that Councilman Callahan added a comment addressed to the Mayor to this online news story.

“Bethlehem mayor responds to councilman’s call for probe into city department,” 69 News, November 26, 2019.

Mayor Donchez,

I discussed this issue with you verbally and made you aware of the situation and what I had heard several months ago. There was NO response back. Nothing.
Note: At this point it was confidential and strictly between us.

I then asked you to go into Executive Session in the Summer, so that the matter could be dealt with in private with the full Council and both Solicitors present. You Denied it!
Note: It was still confidential and I was trying to address it so that it remained Confidential in Executive Session. You Denied it, not I !

I then sent you a letter on October 17th explaining what I had told you verbally in the Summer. I explained in the letter all of the facts that I know other than the names of the individuals. It is not my job to “out” them. It is your department and your employees. I suggested that your BA Mr. Evans and your Solicitor Mr. Leeson just simply interview the employees in the Dept. to find out the truth.

Your reply back to me in your letter clearly indicated that you were not looking into the issue. You stated to me, ” Your memo of October 21 does not provide sufficient cause to conduct the investigation requested” .

You asked me to produce documents, names, particulars, …….and indicia of corroboration.

Mayor, you know that I, or anyone else on Council has the authority to investigate or interview your department employees or Dept. Head!
Note: At this point it was still Confidential other than President Waldron, Solicitor Spirk on Councils side and Solicitor Leeson, Business Administrator Evans and yourself on the Administration side.

Only after your comments to Council on Nov. 19th that I had somehow “attacked” Ms. Karner, from my council seat, by simply asking a pointed but fair question, it was only then that this issue became public.

Your comments tried to insinuate that my questioning of Ms. Karner was totally meritless, unfounded, unwarranted and out of the blue…..while you knew better!

On November 20, You then sent me a memo asking for me to now come in for a interview with Mr. Leeson and Mr. Evans only because I explained to Mr. Evans that after your comments to Council on Nov. 19th , that I shared all the information that I had with the press. It was then and only then that you wanted to now discuss the issues that I had raised and that I had tried to keep confidential for many months.

I offered you 3 different opportunities to look into the seriousness of the issues that I made you aware of. We would not be in the situation that we are currently in had you simply looked into the allegations months ago when you were first notified. You denied any action all 3 times.

Stop hiding behind your lawyers and advisors and …….Do your job ……..and simply ask the employees in the questioned dept. if there is any truth to the issues that were brought to not only my attention but were also reported by Lehigh Valley Ramblings Blogger Bernie Ohare back in June.

The residents of Bethlehem deserve to know the truth and you are the only one who can guarantee their protection form retribution for telling the truth.

Councilman Bryan Callahan

The Mayor said that he would have a further statement after reviewing Councilman Callahan’s press conference, at which he had a stenographer making an exact transcription. Somebody tell the Mayor that we have a full video of the press conference here on Gadfly.

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