OK, I’ll admit political contributions aren’t always the indicator people think they are, but they say something about a politician.
In this case, most of the top people whom the Lackawanna County commissioners hired in the last two weeks contributed to their campaigns. Most of the amounts are relatively small, but I think you should know.
Commissioner Jerry Notarianni teamed up with Commissioner Chris Chermak to hire former Scranton School Director Brian Jeffers as county chief of staff and attorney Frank Ruggiero as solicitor.
Jeffers contributed the $233.21 cost of running an event for Notarianni. Last May, Jeffers’ wife, Nancy, contributed $250 and his mother, Shirley, contributed $200, to the Committee for a Better Lackawanna County. That committee raised money for Notarianni and his running mate at the time, George Kelly.
Ruggiero contributed $2,500 to the same committee before the primary. In a recent interview, he said he gave more recently to a Notarianni committee, but so far documents don’t reflect that.
Ruggiero did give $2,500 on Oct. 2 to the Republican commissioner campaign of Chermak and his running mate, Mike Giannetta. Last April, he gave $2,500 to Giannetta’s individual campaign committee.
Chermak, the minority commissioner and a Republican, got to appoint his own solictor. He picked attorney Paul LaBelle, who has trouble paying his taxes on time. I couldn’t find any contributions from LaBelle.
LaBelle’s wife, Mari, contributed $100 last Oct. 5 to the campaign committee of Chermak and his running mate, Mike Giannetta. So did the LaBelles’ daughter, Caroline Maloney.
As for Commissioner Debi Domenick, she hired Brian Doughton as her confidential secretary. He gave $150 last May 1 to the campaign committee for Domenick and former Commissioner Patrick O’Malley.
So take all that for what it’s worth, but now you know a bit more.