Bucks Writs - Spring 2018 - 3
Jessica A. Pritchard
Vice President/President Elect
Robert T. Repko
Daniel M. Keane
Sean M. Gresh
David J. Truelove
Commissioner Robert G. Loughery
By Susan E. Dardes
T WAS ONCE AGAIN MY HONOR and
pleasure to sit down with one of
Bucks County's finest - our Commissioners - and talk about promises and
passions for the future.
I asked him what he would do as our
Commissioner, if he had a 1 billion
dollar windfall in his budget, and
no restrictions were placed on the
spending. It's all about the worker,
he said. Bucks County is a wonderful place to live but
affordable housing for young married couples is still a
long way off. Commissioner Loughery would help people
venture to become more productive, provide training and
I inquired how it was that the Chairman came to be a
Commissioner. Loughery succeeded Jim Cawley when he
was tapped to become Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania, completing Cawley's term and running for a full
term in 2011. He has long had an interest in public
administration, so he majored in policy and management
studies, with a concentration in the public sector, while at
Dickinson College, in Carlisle. In between sophomore and
junior years, he interned in his hometown of Warrington,
for the Township Manager.
By Marion Freiberg
He also met fellow Dickinson alumnus Jim Greenwood
that summer, when as part of a school project,
heroes but got to dress up/
to write a grant for playground funding. Atthe
reenact as those heroes.
emerging African American
visit, he met again with State Senator Greenwood
in of Bucks County
And, last Fall, the AAMBC
development for skilled laborers in,
Harrisburg, and interned for him the spring(AAMBC)
with the Peace
in a big way.
fabrication, mechanics and auto repair.
of senior year. Eventually, Rob became Greenwood's
to bring 32 young
his February 2 tributemetal
strengthen our public transportation system,people
driver, then campaign manager, when Jim Greenwood
he let the over-200-person
collar worker could get to a job even iftothat
for Congress. He likewise ran Charlie Martin's
Mike that heblue
doubt that of discrimiFitzpatrick's local campaigns.
supports its mission on
andthe opposite end of the county. And, noexperiences
Bucksis has made strides in allocating prison beds
goal. Why is that? What
Rob's other work after college was with the Youth
careof the House of Representhe floor
museum? a pilot program, for inmates needing mentalonhealth
of Bucks County. He held leadership roles in the county's
and addiction recovery, yet Loughery sees atatives.
for the museum followed up with a community
industrial development corporation and its redevelopment
The AAMBC is a new
it is mostlyfacilities.
a mobileAn epic crisis meeting
about next steps to take to increase inclusion
museum at the moment, but certainly making its mark on
the county. Through its educational efforts, the museum
If the AAMBC's mission touches you, if you'd like to be
seeks to throw a spotlight onto the contributions of Bucks
part of realizing its mission, please support this young,
County's African American "Hidden Figures," past and
emerging 501c (3) non-profit with a donation towards
present, such as Judge Waite. The museum's mission is to
its continuing programming as well as its goal to have a
act now to capture disappearing history and widen apprecipermanent home in the county. You can donate online on
ation of the many enormous African American contributors
the museum website, www.infoaambc.com, or contact us
of Bucks County.
Both Judge Waite and the AAMBC know that appreciation
grows and deepens when it is personal. As Judge Waite
said, "There's a need for interaction between the races, the
ethnic groups, the socio-economic groups. We need to get
together to know one another on a personal level which
makes for a fully functioning community."
email submissions to
placed on the spending. It's all
about the worker, he said.
ON THE COVER:
Bucks County March for Our Lives
The African American Museum
of Bucks County
The AAMBC could not agree more. The museum seeks to
have a personal impact through its educational programs.
For example, the museum recently held an afternoon
program for families called "Hidden Figures," where old
and young alike not only heard stories of African American
y husband and I spend winters in Vero Beach, along
Florida's Treasure coast. As a result, I must navigate
unfamiliar terrain. Fortunately, I have not only an iPhone
with a Google app but an in-dash navigator.
So many times, I pulled over, found a pay
phone to call the District Justice's wife for
directions, which were usually provided by
the police officer waiting for my arrival.
Vero is confusing as all streets are numbered. Avenues
travel north, streets east. We are too far from the ocean
to ascertain direction from the shoreline and with so many
bays and lagoons, traversing a bridge does not mean
you are traveling east. So much for natural landmarks.
Learning these roads made me flash back to my first days
in Bucks County.
The upper end was even more of a mystery but at least
Perkasie was a direct shot after turning left onto 5th
Ave. off Route 313.
Roads changed names from town to town and their
numbers (332, 232, 413, 313, 532) were similar. Signs
didn't reveal direction.
By osmosis, we learn the pathways of our native land. At
the New Jersey shore, when I grew up, the Garden State
Parkway provided numbered exits from 1 to 168 for a
straight shot from the GW Bridge to Cape May. You can
drive half asleep and still not miss a mile marker.
So many times, I pulled over, found a pay phone to call
the District Justice's wife for directions, which were usually
provided by the police officer waiting for my arrival.
Then we have the Atlantic, on the left heading south
and the right heading north. Jughandles and circles easily
correct wrong turns. Route numbers are dissimilar, Rtes.
37, 88, 70, 35.
I rarely made it on time unless one of the court reporters
drove me. Fortunately, the hearings rarely began at the
All this changed when I moved to Bucks County to be a
Public Defender. After a six-month stint in the prison, new
PDs are assigned to preliminary hearings. I drove a manual
1966 122 Volvo. With a stick it was impossible to drive
while consulting a map.
I used to beg Cindy Simpson Pratt to drive to Doylestown
in the mornings rather than meet me at Judge Orazi's in
Morristown even though she lived in Feasterville. A native,
Cindy had conquered the lower end and treated me to many
free lunches at her mom's house. We also clocked some
serious Marshalls time on the way back to Doylestown.
March for Our Lives:
"Take the back roads" to the lower end, advised my
colleagues, never 95 or the Turnpike. "Every District Justice
office is right off Edgely Woodbourne."
I feel proud of my painfully acquired but slight lower end
navigational skills. Trial by fire is a quick learning curve. I
now know at least five different pathsways to motor from
A typical day consisted of a 10:00 am assault case at DJ
Doylestown to the lower end. Montgomery County is a
Ritter's, a 1:00 pm bad check at DJ Manto's and a 3:00 pm
East, Class of 2020) - Nancy Larkin Taylor
By Jared F. (Central Bucks
retail theft at DJ Spadacino's.
Even though Washington, DC is our
nation's capital, that march would not
have resonated with me the same way
my hometown march did.
aving the opportunity to attend the
March for Our Lives in Doylestown, PA
meant a lot to me because two weeks prior, I participated in the National School Walkout at my school. It left
me feeling inspired, and wanting to do more than just
walk out of school in protest, so I decided to attend the
upcoming march to get more involved. I had a choice; I
could either attend the march in Washington, DC, with
my Youth Council organization, or I could attend the
local march with my cousin, a ninth grader at Lenape
Middle School. I decided to stay with her and attend the
local march. Additionally, I personally know some of the
Enough is enough!" There were thousands
of people in the street, and I immediately knew I made
the right decision. The area around me was familiar and
comforting. Even though Washington, DC is our nation's
capital, that march would not have resonated with me
the same way my hometown march did. We walked
through the streets, chanting and seeing old friends, until
we arrived at the Doylestown courthouse, fired up. There
Finally, the day came for the march. My uncle dropped us
off and the first thing we heard was the chant, "Enough
Hook. Aurora. Orlando. Las
Vegas. Parkland. Assault weapons. Bump
A Brief Refresher on the Right to Keep and Bear Arms
Concealed carry. Armed teachers.
Sandy Hook. Aurora. Orlando. Las Vegas.
Parkland. Assault weapons. Bump stocks.
Background checks. Waiting periods.
Concealed carry. Armed teachers. Sandy
Hook. Aurora. Orlando. Las Vegas.
Parkland. Assault weapons. Bump
stocks. Background checks. Waiting
periods. Concealed carry. Armed
teachers. Sandy feature
Hook. Aurora. Orlando.
Las Vegas. Parkland. Assault weapons.
Bump stocks. Background checks.
Waiting periods. Concealed carry. Armed
teachers. Sandy Hook. Aurora. Orlando.
Las Vegas. Parkland. Assault weapons.
Bump stocks. Background checks.
Not Your Average
Waiting periods. Concealed
teachers. Sandy Hook. Aurora. Orlando.
Las Vegas. Parkland.
March for Our Lives: A Reflection
The Second Amendment: A Brief Refresher
On The Right To Keep And Bear Arms
By Theresa Martin Golding, Esquire
[ Education Planning, Part 1 ]
By Marianna Goldenberg, CDFA
Not Your Average 529 Plan
o, let's start with a refresher. What is a 529 college
including the possible loss of funds. There is no guarantee
savings plan (spoiler alert: no longer just college)?
that a college-funding goal will be met. In order to be
federally tax-free, earnings must be used to pay for
A 529 plan is a tax-deferred account with contributions
qualified higher education expenses. The earnings portion
invested in a selection of mutual funds or exchangeof a nonqualified withdrawal will be subject to ordinary
traded funds. Later, those assets can be withdrawn tax
income tax at the recipient's marginal rate and subject to
free if used for qualified expenses. These contributions are
a 10-percent penalty. By investing in a plan outside your
not deductible on your federal tax return, but many states
state of residence, you may lose any state tax benefits.
offer a state tax deduction for contributions made to 529
529 plans are subject to enrollment, maintenance, and
plans. And yes, Pennsylvania
states! research on the issues at
administration/management fees and expenses.
hand in order to succeed. By devoting the hours and days
necessary, Neale feels he leads by example. He similarly
How Much to Contribute
a Qualified Expense
enjoyed his previous "very satisfying" four-year
* The IRS allows for an annual gift tax exclusion
the New Hope-Solebury School Board. There,It'sheimportant
served to know, "What is considered a qualified
of up to $15,000 per recipient for individuals
three years as chair of the Finance Committee
and the Withdrawals from 529 plans to fund qualified
($30,000 for married couples) annually without
fourth as President. This followed the aforementioned
expenses are tax free. With the 2018 Tax Cuts and Jobs
career in commercial insurance. Why the change? He saw
Act, the answer to this question has changed. Let's
* Under a specialthe
to get involved.
take a closer look.
with a one-time gift to a 529 plan of up to $75,000
per recipient for
work of the
Controller's office is almost
Traditionally, qualified expenses were those
couples), to beentirely
five of work comes from
incurred at an eligible postsecondary school. These
years - without
the and monthly
gift tax exclusion.
and must be completed. Kimincluded
been First Deputy to the office (and occasionally
acting fees, books, supplies, and equipment
The fees, expenses,
can varycentury. Her
vast and board that is included in the
from state to state.
cost of attendance
By Scott L. Feldman
Neale is often tasked with reassigning and20changing
individual co-workers' responsibilities in order to maximize
overall effectiveness. Among the initial challenges has
been "making sure practices comply with the policy at a
minimum." Neale discovered that certain longstanding
practices have unfortunately followed the "that's the way
we've always done it around here" credo rather than a
stated policy or best practice. One example cited was the
untimeliness of expense reports. Neale looks forward to
gently reeling in some of these practices and the office
becoming more efficient.
On the one hand, Neale Dougherty could not be more
proud of the fact that he was part of the wave of the first
Democratic row officers elected to serve Bucks County in
some 35 years. On the other hand, he quickly volunteered
that the Controller's office is perhaps the least political
office in Doylestown. On the one hand, Neale's calm
demeanor and soft spoken-ness are indicative of one who
spent eighteen years in commercial insurance (yawn). On
the other hand, he is an avid black diamond skier whose
children are champion level age group ski racers themselves.
Controller Neale Dougherty
The Controller's office web page, http://www.buckscounty.
org/government/RowOfficers/Controller, contains a treasure
trove of reports and information. A comprehensive 100+
page Comprehensive Annual Financial Report is available.
The fiscal 2017 report is presently being audited and will
similarly be available to the public by the end of May.
Neale readily explained that "our core mission is to make
sure Bucks County tax dollars are spent appropriately." The
Controller is ultimately responsible for the overall County
annual budget of some $420,000,000, and is authorized
The Controller also serves on the County retirement board,
to examine the accounts and official acts of all officers or
salary board and prison oversight board.
other persons who collect, receive, or disperse the County's
money. The office thus has auditing responsibilities for
The Dougherty home in SoleburyBy
the nineteen Magisterial District Courts, all of the local
animal driven. Neale and Lorraine, a private practice
municipal tax collectors and the various County offices
as Silva Morel unlawfully fired for blowing the
oncologist and hematologist, are very involved with their
(such as District Attorney, Recorder of Deeds, Sheriff,
and on a $5,000,000
bribe? Or was he fired for
childrens' varied academic and athletic pursuits. In addition
Prothonotary). It turns out some of these offices
company secrets on his YouTube channel
to ski racing, twelve-year-old James and ten-year-old Lizzie
not been audited in a decade or more. Theseand
drunk at a company dinner? This was the
also play lacrosse and soccer. Neale founded the local youth
prioritized. In addition, thousands of vendorshypothetical
civil trial put on by 16 of our local Bucks
lacrosse program and remains very active as a coach. The
County; the office reviews the individual contracts
the 2018 Mock Trial Competition.
family has two Newfoundlands, a large breed known for
adherence to them.
as well Central
as two cats. Neale is well
This year, the final trial
was an epic
read, absorbing several newspapers each day. He enjoys
Neale was sworn in on January 2, and attended
South High School and Bensalem High School. The
reading biographies, and recently read Skydog, the Duane
board meeting the same day. In all, the transition
was a 7-5 Jury Vote in favor of Bensalem, with 5 of
smooth and professional. He likes to keep busy
scoring the match by a 1-point margin!
2018 MOCK TRIAL COMPETITION
The Case of a Drunken Whistleblower
Congratulations to all the participating schools,
and to Bensalem for winning our District for a
second year in a row!
Each year the Young Lawyers Division of the BCBA volunteers
its time for this amazing competition. Specifically, the
Chair-Elect of the YLD is named Coordinator of the Bucks
County District. Running the Mock Trial Competition has
been informally dubbed a "rite of passage" for being named
YLD Chair the following year. No work, no play - right?
This year we were able to cobble together 22 trials. That is
22 Judges; 22 sets of Juries; and 22 Bailiffs. What was, and
continues to be, a daunting task, was made so much easier
because of the level of support from the Bench and the Bar.
THE BENCH: I cannot state with enough emphasis how
grateful I am to the following Judges, all of whom
were so gracious (and flexible) with their time during
J. Robert O. Baldi
J. Wallace H. Bateman
J. William J. Benz
J. Daniel Finello
J. Jeffrey L. Finley, P.J.
J. C. Theodore Fritsch, Jr.
J. Lisa Gaier
J. Michael W. Gallagher
J. Gary Gilman
J. Brian T. McGuffin
J. Raymond F. McHugh
J. James M. McMaster
J. Robert J. Mellon
J. Michael W. Petrucci
J. John J. Rufe, ret.
J. Jeffrey G. Trauger
I also want to thank the right hands - the extension of
every Judge - their Judicial Assistants. Thank you Katy,
Jessica, Stacy, Aimee, Nina, Sandy, Ann, Beth, Regina, Kate,
Kathy and Karen for your help, and for putting up with all
my emails, phone calls and schedule changes.
The "Objection of the Year" took place in a Trial presided over by Judge Baldi:
Wildcat's historic upset
of the highly favored
Georgetown Hoyas in
Lexington, KY, in what
many still refer to as
"the perfect game"
where Villanova shot
a record 78.6% from
the floor to defeat
It took an additional
36 years, but in 2016,
under coach Jay Wright, the Wildcats again took home
the National Championship in Houston, TX, when they
defeated North Carolina 77-74 on a last-second shot
by Kris Jenkins.
When we arrived in San Antonio on the Friday night
before the Semi-Finals, we were delighted to find that
the University had reserved several bars along the famous
Riverwalk to host Pre-Game parties for Villanova alum.
We spent the night before the semi-final game partying at
a piano bar called Howl at the Moon. The following day
featured a private party for about 2500 Villanova fans at
the Institute of Texas Culture, featuring Texas delicacies
such as Tacos, Po Boys, and Tamales, as well as unlimited
supplies of Lone Star Beer.
We mixed and mingled with
friends and former college
basketball greats like Kerry
Kittles, Harold Jenson,
and Charles Barkley. From
there, we all marched in
tandem to the Alamodome.
We tried to suppress our
excitement through the first
game where Michigan was
ultimately able to subdue
spirited but undersized
Loyola of Chicago, and then
we turned our attention to the Main Event: Villanova versus
Kansas. What was expected to be a close game, quickly
turned into a rout as Villanova couldn't miss a shot. Before
seven minutes had elapsed, the Cats were leading 22-4,
and the game was essentially over. Just prior to tip-off, we
found ourselves surrounded by Kansas fans who began
This year's tournament coincided with the 300th
anniversary of the city of San Antonio. The newly
refurbished Alamodome was prepared to host almost
70,000 rabid college basketball fans. This year's Final
Four featured two traditional powerhouses; Kansas and
2018 Mock Trial Competition:
The Case of a Drunken Whistleblower
THE BAR: This year, the Bucks County Bar Association
Attorneys knocked it out of the park. Nearly 150 local
attorneys volunteered their time (some on multiple nights).
I wanted to make this list, not only to commend those who
are on it, but also to use it as a tool for recruiting. Before
the Competition began, Judge Brian T. McGuffin said,
"The Mock Trial Competition is, in my no longer humble
opinion, the most effective community outreach the Bar
Association participates in each year." I could not agree
more. As a Bar Association, we often look for opportunities
to let the community know "WE ARE HERE!" Well, the
Mock Trial Competition is an annual opportunity to show
the community, and these students, that we support them
and that we care.
Take a look at the list, and talk to your fellow attorneys
that you don't see - coworkers and friends. Ask them to
volunteer next year. Take them out for a drink afterwards.
(How else do you think Litske keeps getting her "All-Star"
Jury to volunteer?) Let's get everyone involved. This is one
community outreach event that we can all get behind!
Michigan, as well as an endearing underdog - Loyola of
hen Villanova finished disposing of Texas A&M
Chicago (a rare 11th seed that had defeated a number
in the Elite Eight round of the 2018 NCAA college
of more highly touted programs on the way to the final
basketball tournament, I looked at my wife, Maureen,
is a narrative
Villanova. It is
said, "We gotta get to the Final Four this year."
JUDGE BALDI: (Pauses
be on the
As Villanova Law grads, we've become huge fans
"blueblood" basketball powers as Kentucky, Duke, North
past 35 years, and our loyalty has been richly rewarded
Carolina, and Kansas, but that would certainly
with the team winning NCAA championships in 1985 and
case if they were able to return to Philadelphia with the
2016. Few loyalists
will ever forget coach
But we wondered whether the magic would run out before
we had the opportunity to see our favorite team win a
championship. So when a friend with season tickets asked
if we would want to join them in San Antonio, TX, for this
year's tournament, we couldn't say NO. Thus began our
Hoffmann Publishing Group, Inc.
2921 Windmill Road
Reading, PA 19608
a 1 billion dollar windfall in his
and no restrictions
were OF BUCKS COUNTY
A recent chat with the new Controller revealed these and
other interesting dichotomies.
Bar Association Office
Stacey Mulholland, Executive Director
135 East State Street
Doylestown, PA 18901
Interview with Commissioner
Robert G. Loughery
I asked Loughery what he would
do as our Commissioner, if he had
Scott L. Feldman
Scott I. Fegley
Nancy Larkin Taylor
Dianne C. Magee
Theresa Martin Golding
Christopher J. Serpico
David J. Truelove
authority, whereby he established the
Enterprise or "EZone" in Bucks, to target
and coordinate areas for economic
development in order to bring jobs to the
County. Economic development through
thoughtful real estate development led
to the start of Rob's real estate consulting
business in 1999, which is in its fifteenth
year. This business background was a
boon to the Board, as the start of his
term saw unprecedented population
growth in the County.
Just before Easter, I talked to Robert
("Rob") Loughery, the Chairman of
the Board of Bucks County Commissioners. Commissioner Loughery has
served on the Board of Commissioners
since 2011, and has been elected the
Chair by Commissioners Marseglia and
Martin six times since 2012. A resident
of Bedminster Township, he is the first
Commissioner in over thirty-five years
to call Upper Bucks his home.
Eyewitness to NCAA Basketball History:
Villanova's Wild Ride at the Final Four
Also in This Issue:
* From the Editor...
* Judge Clyde Waite Reception
* Business Law Institute
* Blood Drive
* Opening of Assizes
* Pro Bono Honor Roll
* St. Patrick's Day Fundraiser
* Tech Tips From a Recovering Geek
* Music Snob's Top 5 List
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