Bucks County Commissioner Candidates, Part II

This continues information from the Kitchen Table Patriots about the candidates for Bucks County Commissioner. Click here for Part I.

The Candidates:

Below is a list of the candidates for the position.  They are not listed in any particular order.  For each we will provide a summary of their resume as well as our own subjective opinions.  We hope that you find this of practical value and will use it to voice your opinion and, perhaps more importantly, establish a dialogue with the members of the Republican party that are charged with recruiting the next generation of elected representatives and leaders in Bucks County.

All of the candidates have a history of public service, are conservative, believe that fiscal responsibility and low taxes are essential to encouraging businesses to locate and expand in the county which will expand the base for revenue.  They are also aware of the increasing demands on county services and the contracting sources of revenue.  They believe that tapping into the counties reserve (rainy day) funds is appropriate for the existing budget shortfall, but are determined to achieve a balanced budget by scrutinizing the budget for potential cost savings and developing plans that would expand the tax base and increase revenues without increasing tax rates which would also preserve the counties AAA bond rating.  All of them praised the existing and prior Republican Commissioners for their job performance and effectiveness.

1. Andrew L. Warren  Video

Warrington Supervisor, Bucks County Commissioner, Penn DOT District Executive, Tullytown Borough Manager, PENJERDEL Executive Director

Andy is a very likable, engaging and frank character.  One advantage that he has over the other candidates is that he was a Commissioner for 15 years and is well aware of the requirements of the job. He enjoys interacting with the public and believes more people should attend Commissioner meetings. He presents himself as a Conservative first and a Republican second promising to do what is appropriate for the people of Bucks County and is willing to stand up to party pressure if it is in conflict with his principals.  He has been responsible for budgets on multiple levels of government and has negotiated effectively with contractors and unions.

2. George F. Komelasky Video

Northampton Township Board of Supervisors (25 yrs), Republican State Committee, Bucks County Executive Committee, Volunteer for many Federal, State, County, and Local Campaigns

George has a long history in the Bucks GOP and is currently a State Committeeman.  He also has a business that provides services to the county.  He is a big believer in the Open Space project at the county and municipal level.  When asked about participating in the lawsuit that was filed against Tea Party candidates for State Committee candidates last May, he said that he regretted the decision, though he believes the ruling was technically correct.  He was glad to talk with us, but is focusing his attention on the Committee executives for his candidacy.

3. Jennifer Yori Video

Southampton Tax Collector, Bank One Director of Regulatory Compliance

Jennifer presented herself as a very competent tax collector who enjoyed interacting with the taxpayers and making an effort to help them resolve any difficulties that they may have with making their payments, but expressed frustration with having a position with limited decision making authority.  She resigned her position at Bank One to entered public service.

4. John McMenamin Video

Chairman – Lower Southampton Board of Supervisors, Small Business Owner (20 employees), Philadelphia Fire Fighter, U.S. Army Veteran, Republican Committee Vice-Chair

John brings a unique mix of experiences to the table in that he is currently a small business owner and a township supervisor chairman.  He has also been a member of a union (fire fighter) and has had to negotiate on the other side of the table.  This experience has given him credibility at the table that has made him effective.  He has also saved his township over $800,000 by using a bond issuing company that did not normally do business with the county or township.  He is approachable, engaging, articulate and confident without being arrogant or apprehensive.  He genuinely seemed to enjoy discussing personal, professional and political issues with those of us who have only become involved in politics in the past few months or couple of years.

5. Lola Biuckians Video

Southampton Township Supervisor (3 – six year terms), PA Southeast Region Counter Terrorism Task Force,

Upper Southampton Civic Association President, Freelance and Portrait Photographer.

Lola has an impressive resume and came across as a regular person – genuine but not a polished politician.  She sees her priority to be to do what is best for the citizen and taxpayer and will resist pressure from interests that would come into conflict with that objective.   She is a creative problem solver with an ability to get along with people, adapt to new situations, and quickly learn new tasks. She is responsible, dependable and a hard working, experienced team leader.

6. Mary K. Smithson Video

Clerk of Bucks County Courts (Row Officer), Newtown Township Board of Supervisors,

Board of Directors  – Council Rock Seniors, Board of Directors – St. Mary Hospital

Mary has won four county-wide elections as a row officer and has been involved in the administrative operations of the county for many years.  That gives her an advantage in comprehending the inner workings of the county government that most of the other candidates are not able to bring to the table. Though she is soft-spoken, she presented herself in a very professional manner and is well versed in the challenges that will be facing the Commissioners in the next few years.

7. Rob Ciervo Video

District 31 Representative Candidate, Chairman – Newtown Township Board of Supervisors, Director of the Rutgers-Camden Learning Center at Rutgers University, Board Member – Bucks County Free Library

Rob brings fresh energy to the candidate pool and does not appear to have let his loss in the general election for State Representative by a handful of votes deter him from continuing to make himself available for public service.  He has a record of fiscal responsibility, keeping the growth of Newtown Township’s budget to about 1% per year and has proved himself to be a resolute negotiator with the public employee unions.  He was very relaxed and his answers were direct and concise.

8. Rob Loughery Video

Principal – The Keystone Companies Group, Inc.,

Rob has been involved in politics and the public sector since working on a campaign with Jim Greenwood.  He has a business that redevelops industrial areas that have not been used for years, bringing new jobs to the county through the initial redevelopment and subsequently though the business that occupy the spaces.  He has personal qualities that will appeal to a broad range of voters and though he is not as well versed on the specifics as other candidates, came across as someone who would be able to bring his mix of private business experience and broad based knowledge of the workings of government and the personalities involved to the position and provide an effective fresh perspective to the challenges of the County Commissioner.

9. Jon Forest Video

Chairman – Buckingham Township Board of Supervisors

Jon was not able to adjust his schedule to meet with The Kitchen Table Patriots.

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