The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Local News

April 16, 2014

Beader plans to resign, just not yet

Wants to vote on I-80/Rt. 19 project

MERCER COUNTY — Democratic Mercer County Commissioner Brian Beader acknowledges that he intends to resign, but said nothing will happen until after he meets privately with the county’s judges next Thursday.

“It’s my intention to resign, but I have not resigned yet. I haven’t set a hard and fast time frame and I won’t until after I speak with the judges. I want to ensure there is a smooth transition and that there are no gaps,” the 10-year veteran commissioner said.

County judges by county law must appoint another Democrat to finish the remainder of Beader’s term, which expires at the end of 2015.

Beader, who recently came under fire for continuing to work as an electrician while holding public office, said a new job offer is behind his decision to resign. The job, he said, will allow him to work full-time in the construction industry and will require out-of-state travel.

He said criticism about his job as an electrician didn’t bother him. “I kept my job in the private sector because I really don’t believe our forefathers intended for anyone to hold a lifetime job in government. I’m going to start winding down in the proper fashion,” he said.

“It’s construction so I never know where or for what length of time and that makes it difficult to attend meetings,” he said. Beader said earlier this year he keeps up with county business by coming in to the courthouse at night and on weekends and handles most communication by email. He attends the twice-a-month commissioners meetings on Thursday mornings and plans to be at the next meeting on April 24.

“You won’t see anything happen on that day either,” he said.

He said he had no suggestions about who he would like to see take his position. “The judges have done a fabulous job in the past. I would say if they could resurrect the late Kenny Seaman that would be a great choice. He was a great man,” he said.

His primary concern, he said, is that work proceeds on having sewers installed at the Interstate 80 and Route 19 interchange. “I campaigned on that. I’ve said all along that that was my goal. And while we have a verbal agreement to donate a parcel of land to make sure that project goes forward, we haven’t voted on that yet. And I believe my vote is critical. I won’t leave until I make sure the process doesn’t go backwards,” he said.

Commissioner Matt McConnell, who publicly criticized Beader for being absent from his commissioner job, said he’s been frustrated with him for months, but is still sorry to see him go.

“I won’t be a Beader-basher. I will miss Brian’s experience and the history that he brought to the table about the way some deals in the past were structured. It’s experience that’s walking out the door and I do respect him for his service to the county,” McConnell said.

“I wish he could have been more active, but I certainly wish him well,” he said.

McConnell said he didn’t believe the purchase of the land at the Interstate 80 and Route 19 interchange was a good decision, but said he has no intention of standing in the way of intentions to donate a parcel of land to the sewer authority.

“We can bring it up immediately and vote on it if that’s what he’s worried about,” he said.

Mercer County Democratic Chairman Charles “Chaz” Rice said he met Tuesday with President Judge Thomas Dobson to discuss the process for replacing Beader. “My phone has been ringing off the hook with people who want the appointment,” he said.

The ultimate decision will be up to Dobson, Rice said, but all the judges will be included in discussions. Rice said the committee would likely make three recommendations.

“But everything right now is hinging on his resignation. We don’t have that yet. Once we have it, then the clock will start ticking,” Rice said.

Commissioners earn $63,845 a year, along with another $23,000 in health care, retirement, Social Security and worker’s compensation benefits.

Commissioner Chairman John Lechner said Beader notified him of his intention to resign, but attached no timeline to the decision. He added that he is confident the judges will move quickly once Beader resigns.

“Brian’s intelligent and he offers quite a bit of insight into issues. His feedback and opinions will be missed. But it will be my job to ensure that county government continues to flow smoothly, regardless of who is appointed,” Lechner said.

Lechner’s term also expires at the end of 2015 but he has not made a decision about whether he intends to run again, he said.

Beader also made news last summer when he was arrested for drunken driving after the Small Ships Revue in downtown Sharon. He was given accelerated rehabilitative disposition because it was his first offense and lost his driving privileges for 60 days, along with paying the associated fines and court costs.

Text Only
Local News
  • CIRT team in Jackson Center Man arrested after shooting standoff

    One Jackson Center man is recovering from a bullet wound, and the borough resident accused of shooting him sits in jail after a long night of drinking that state police say turned into a case of attempted homicide.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sharon Speedway location City on track for new Speedway store

    Speedway is lining up its administrative and bureaucratic cones on plans for the gas station and convenience store chain to zoom into downtown Sharon.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Guards, county OK deal

    County officials and guards at the Mercer County Jail have reached a tentative contract agreement that, if approved, halts the idea of privatizing operations at the facility.

    July 31, 2014

  • Doss: Public has right to know

    A major part of Farrell council’s work session Monday was spent deciding whether or not to inform the audience about an unofficial police proposal from the City of Sharon.

    July 30, 2014

  • Budget falling short despite tax hike

    Farrell residents may have seen an income tax increase this year, but the city isn’t seeing the extra dollars City Manager Michael Ceci budgeted for.

    July 30, 2014

  • oakwood graves 1 Resting together

    Visitors to Oakwood Cemetery would see many  familiar local names if they looked down the hillside to the left just inside the gate on Sharon’s North Oakland Avenue.

    July 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • Police: Kids in car were OK

    The mother of two young children was drunk and passed out when police found them all in a car parked along a city street, Sharon police said.

    July 29, 2014

  • To talk – or not – about police

    The mysterious agenda item, “No. 10,” at Farrell’s council meeting Monday became the center of a heated workshop and business session.

    July 29, 2014

  • Community thanks its first-responders

    Sharpsville honored its emergency responders Sunday at an event that included Mertz Towers residents as special guests.

    July 28, 2014

  • Drilling boom challenges state inspectors

    The state’s 83 well inspectors face a daunting enough challenge keeping tabs on 120,000 active oil and gas wells that have been drilled over the last century.

    July 28, 2014

  • Kidds Mill Covered Bridge A span of time

    Four generations of the Cadman family have enjoyed the Kidds Mill Covered Bridge, which is in Pymatuning Township near where the family’s ancestral farm is located.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • Intruder hurts woman, takes $5

    A home invasion in Hermitage Friday night sent an elderly woman to the hospital and netted the robber $5.

    July 27, 2014

  • national night out March against crime set for Aug. 5

    At the last Southwest Mercer County Regional Police Commission meeting, Chief Riley Smoot Jr. presented the number of incidents for each of the four communities in May.

    Farrell topped out at 819.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • high street trail Peaceful pathways

    History buffs and picnickers in the Shenango Valley won’t have to drive to Sharpsville to hang out at the old Erie Canal extension lock. They’ll soon have the option to walk or roll in on bicycles and even powered chairs to visit Canal Park near the outflow of Shenango Dam.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • balloonquest1 Balloon Quest celebrates 25 years

    Today is the final day of the 25th annual Western Pennsylvania Balloon Quest at Scotland Meadows Park.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo