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Public Corruption in Chester County, PA

I believe an unlikely mix of alleged drug trafficking related politicos and alleged white nationalist related politicos united to elect the infamous “Bloc of Four” in the abysmal voter turnout election of 2005. During their four year term the drug business was good again and white nationalists used Coatesville as an example on white supremacist websites like “Stormfront”. Strong community organization and support from law enforcement, in particular Chester County District Attorney Joseph W. Carroll has begun to turn our community around. The Chester County drug trafficking that I believe centers on Coatesville continues and I believe we still have public officials in place that profit from the drug sales. But the people here are amazing and continue to work against the odds to make Coatesville a good place to live.

Monday, July 20, 2015

About the alJazeera article concerning Coatesville

Beleaguered Coatesville sold its water system to a private company in hopes of fueling a turnaround that never came

July 13, 2015 5:00AM ET
alJazeera describes the main street of Coatesville: 
“Lincoln Highway, a potholed street that cuts through the heart of Coatesville, a small city less than an hour’s drive from Philadelphia.”
The Lincoln Highway is now smooth surfaced and pothole free. That’s just one step in improving the lives of people and business owners here including my own family’s and neighbor’s lives.

Coatesville’s higher than advertised water and sewer costs are not some conspiracy to raise costs on poor people as the alJazeera article suggests. 

alJazeera got it mostly correct but some of the details are missing or inaccurate. 

No one would be complaining about high water and sewer costs if there was no 2007 world wide depression and collapse of the homebuilding industry in Chester County. 

The new sewer treatment plant was designed not only to serve Coatesville and Valley Township but the anticipated flushes from thousands of people moving into the 80 planned residential subdivisions on farmland north and west of Coatesville.

If the City of Coatesville Water and Sewer Authority was not sold we would still be experiencing water and sewer rate increases and there would be no money from the sale of the system. Basically it’s a wash for Coatesville residents. 
“Building the new plant was the only way around a worsening situation. “The old plant was barely meeting its limits and would not have met the new permit requirements for phosphorus, nitrogen and copper,” says DeBalko. “In 2006, we were adding 400 to 500 houses a year, and the old plant would not have been able to meet this growth.” 
“The plant is sized to handle growth 10 years from now based on projections from the municipalities. The plant is also optimized to minimize power use...Even more serious were the maintenance issues with the old plant. “We were always worried about the coat hangers and duct tape” breaking at the old plant, says DeBalko. Lutz adds, 
“Since the old plant was built in 1932, with an upgrade in 1962 and 1988, we found it difficult to obtain parts. We often had to have parts made because they were no longer manufactured or kept in stock by suppliers. And if we couldn't get parts, we had to do whatever it took to make it work.” 
“Municipalities served by the Coatesville plant welcomed the new facility. “The old plant was limiting new growth and development,” says DeBalko.“We have given them tours of the new plant, and after comparing it with the old plant, they were very impressed.” 
Brandywine Valley Association members have toured the plant, as have middle school students. “We bring students through and explain the impact on the environment,” says Lutz. The plant staff also invites representatives from municipalities outside the region to visit and see the technology. “We like to help other plants the way they helped us when we were touring facilities and looking at different technologies,” Lutz says.” 
tpo Treatment Plant Operator 
A Smooth Transition 
By Trude Witham - Top Performer - Plant February 2012  
Experienced operators in Coatesville, Pa., provide the key to putting a new treatment plant to work while simultaneously running the old one
You can find hundreds of places to write articles nearly identical to the one alJazeera wrote about Coatesville.  It’s water company business as usual. Water Companies are actually in the real estate speculation business. When housing was booming in Pennsylvania groups like Delaware Riverkeeper located land that real estate speculators intended to develop by looking at proposals for water and sewer lines in Pennsylvania. 


alJazeera missed the unique and big stories here:

"The dilapidation of Coatesville is closely intertwined with the growing cost of water. Back in 2001, city officials sold the rights to the system to PAWC, in the hopes that the revenue from the sale could spark an urban renaissance. But that turnaround never came. Now thousands of low-income people must pay exorbitant prices to access a basic resource." 

The only part of the above paragraph that is true is that low income people are paying high prices for water. The rest is poor journalism. 

The sale of the water company had no link to revitalizing Coatesville. The reasons the revitalization failed is worthy of a national level news story:

When a new progressive leadership came into Coatesville City Council beginning in 2001, one of them was Carmen Green mentioned in the alJazzera article. They hired Paul Janssen as the new Coatesville City Manager. The first thing Paul Janssen did was to more than double the size of the Coatesville PD and hire Dominic Bellizzie, a former Philadelphia PD narcotics division leader. 

The Chester County drug business leadership immediately set about removing Paul Janssen. 

I believe the Saha farm property rights thing was the vehicle Chester County drug dealers latched onto for their comeback. 

Beginning in the summer of 2005 I wrote emails to about 80 people that outlined what I believed the "Bloc of Four" council would do if elected. By September of 2005 I was sure that the new council would fire Chief Bellizzie and install suspected Chester County drug leader Richard Legree into a leadership position in the Coatesville PD. 

Revitalization is bad for the drug business. Taking down the planned revitalization of Coatesville was also in the mix.  No one but me and one other person from Coatesville believed that could happen. I was laughed at. 

In January of 2006 the “Bloc of Four” took office. 

Law enforcement officials and journalists around the country were suddenly very interested in what I had to say. 

Coatesville's golf course battle was between the city and John Birch Society anti-"Smart Growth" anti-Agenda 21” coalition led by JBS Chapter Leader & 2 times 6th District Congressional Candidate Patrick Henry Sellers. I believe it was financed by local JBS billionaires.  Sellers also subscribes to the "American Renaissance" racist eugenics monthly. I beleive he is at the very least a White Nationalist with connections to militia groups through Larry Pratt. Pratt assisted Pat in his first run for Congress. 

Sellers organized the political campaigns of the mostly black "Block of Four" City Council. Those "Bloc of Four" council members allegedly ran for council in an effort to stop Coatesville from acquiring land for the golf course that was to be both recreational and attached to the Coatesville Marriott Courtyard Hotel. 

I believe the real and unstated reason for the "Block of Four" council was to eliminate Coatesville Police Chief Bellizzie, eliminate the narcotics division, fire Lt. Gordon, lay off 1/2 of the PD and install Richard Legree to make the drug business “good again”. I believe the "Bloc of Four" candidates were the victims of a con.
“I need Matt Gordon back” DA Joe Carroll 
Joe was responding to Coatesville City Councilperson Kurt Schenk. Joe Carroll is a very easy going person. Joe’s hands were shaking as he said this. I have never before or since seen Chester County Joe Carroll as angry as he was that evening.

In 2006 not only was the drug business made good again. Car trunks filled with firearms opened on 8th Avenue. Guns were mostly given to young men by,  I believe, Crips and Bloods gangs.  Gunshots were heard and bullets dug from walls on a daily basis in Coatesville. People stayed away from windows. Traffic on Lincoln Highway was sometimes blocked by drug deals in the street. Our “fake police chief” “Chief” Matthews installed by City Manager Harry Walker assured us it was just kids and not national street gangs writing graffiti all over Coatesville. On high crime weekends Coatesville had one officer on duty on 12 hour shifts due to PD cutbacks. Coatesville Vietnam Veterans woke up to the sound of an AK-47. 

Local arsonists one of them a Coatesville Assistant Chief lit hundreds of fires and brought the ATF and State Police in. The drug business suffered and one dealer that I know had to hire more lookouts because of undercover ATF and State Police. He was even forced to get a job. 

Stormfront lit up with comments about Coatesville. Pat Sellers went door to door to choose what became the Bloc of Four council members. I believe his racist self was amused by the fires. 

The fires and the national attention they brought quickly brought the drug business in Coatesville down a few notches. 

In Coatesville elected officials aren't Democrat and Republican, they are pro-drug dealer or anti-drug dealer. 
Coatesville’s current City Council President Linda Lavender Norris was 1/2 of PA State Rep. Tim Hennessy’s office staff in Coatesville. The other staff member is convicted crack cocaine manufacturer Lisa Johnson. 

Right now I think what keeps Coatesville’s economy humming along is still mostly the drug business. I think the local economy would collapse if the drug business disappeared. I think there are many people in Chester County who want to keep the drug business as it is. 

Coatesville gets the bodies from the drug business and West Chester gets the money from the drug business.  

The courtroom in this scene from “The Wire” could be a West Chester courtroom and the lawyer character Maurice Levy could be a West Chester attorney:

Maurice 'Maury' Levy: 
You are amoral, are you not? You are feeding off the violence and the despair of the drug trade. You are stealing from those who themselves are stealing the lifeblood from our city. You are a parasite who leeches off...  
Omar: Just like you, man.  
Maurice 'Maury' Levy: ...the culture of drugs. Excuse me? What?  
Omar: I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase. It's all in the game though, right? 

The Wire - Omar Testifies Against Bird

Some people condone young black men selling drugs, saying "How else can you get ahead?" Selling drugs to put yourself through school and move up the ladder is not a good career path for young black men. A few make it. Many people that try it end up in prison or worse. 

The career choice for the young people of Coatesville does not need to be a choice of low income service jobs or high income and high risk illegal drug jobs.

The potential of a Coatesville that is the business and transportation powerhouse of Chester County will benefit all income classes and races in and near Coatesville. 

There is now a coalition of people in and outside of Coatesville and even in County Government, who see Coatesville as the primary legal business, urban residential and transportation center in Chester County. 

We have 2 major rail lines, interstate links and a soon to be international business jet direct flight capable airport. I believe 60 business aircraft are now hangared at Coatesville's G.O. Carlson Airport. Hundreds of people fly over the City of Coatesville.  I wonder how many business people daydream about Coatesville's potential. 

Coatesville is a natural place as the center of commerce of Chester County. 

I do believe that the train station will be built with Senator Dinniman behind it. That the DePetris buildings will go up and other parts of Coatesville's downtown will be invigorated. 

I think all that will happen in spite of what I believe is a dysfunctional city council and a city government that has lingering pieces of corruption built into it. 

Undertaking construction in the City of Coatesville without factoring in how organized crime and corrupt public officials in Chester County will effect that construction and could hinder a construction project. 

I believe the scales have tipped.

Powerful people outside of Coatesville now want Coatesville to become the business and transportation hub of Chester a County.  

The lucrative drug business here has been cracked open and is bleeding out. It can't die quickly enough for me. 

We might even have a new Magistrate Judge coming in January. 


Coatesville with all its problems is a comfortable place to live and raise a family. 

When you list Coatesville’s problems you need to consider alternative places to live and their problems. For instance drug addiction and prostitution problems are about the same in Coatesville and in the affluent outer suburbs. 

A major marijuana growing business operated in a house and barn that was only 150 feet from the subdivision of $375,000 and up homes we lived in near Schwenksville, PA. It might still be operating except for a very rare downdraft weather phenomenon that caused smoke from burning marihuana chaff to spread across the town of Schwenksville, PA. 

Local school children in the Perkiomen Valley School District told us that some teenagers set up their family homes as drug and sex for sale houses when parents were away. 

Heroin and prescription narcotic drug use might be a bigger threat to young men's and young women's lives in white affluent suburbs than in places like Coatesville.


A few years ago a man set up a blog that I could write to called Coatesville Dems. It's mostly a blog about public corruption in Chester County. I'll never run out of things to write about concerning public corruption in Chester County but I would prefer to have have a reason to write less about public/private corruption and to write more about the success of public/private community achievements in Coatesville. 

Some of the Coatesville Dems blog is opinion like this post. But most of Coatesville Dems Blog is a resource of information:

Audio recordings court documents, videos and news articles about Coatesville, drug crime, street gangs morphing to international gangs, white supremacist and militia groups, 1 percent motorcycle clubs, public corruption, the rapidly changing local organized crime scene, transportation and municipal government in Pennsylvania; especially that which is related to Chester County and the City of Coatesville. 

The Coatesville Dems Blog is mostly an information blog. It was used as the primary source for at least one academic thesis. 

You can read more about this and listen to recorded meetings at the Coatesville Dems blog. 

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