Minutes after he was selected chairperson of the Warminster Board of Supervisors during Tuesday night's re-organization meeting, Leo Quinn began what he called a "sea change" for the township by voting with the Republican majority for a new township manager and solicitor. Richard Manfredi has been named acting township manager, replacing Bob Tate, who said he was informed 10 days ago that he would be asked to tender his resignation. Tate had no further comment on his removal.
"This evening we have strengthened our professional team by bringing people on board who will understand their roles and will work with and for all of us to provide the highest level of service for the people of Warminster in the most cost effective manner," said Quinn in a statement before the votes.
Mary Eberle, from the law firm Grim, Biehn & Thatcher, has been selected to replace Michael Savona as township solicitor, with Savona's services still being retained to follow through with ongoing township business. Eberle is also solicitor for Horsham Township and serves as solicitor for the Horsham Township Authority (HLRA).
Her service on the HLRA impressed Quinn enough to agree with fellow supervisor Tom Panzer's nomination of Eberle for the township solicitor position.
"To say she is impressive is putting it lightly," said Quinn. "Mr. Savona did a good job, she will do a better one."
Supervisor Ellen Jarvis disagreed with the nomination, saying that Savona had made great progress in his four years as township supervisor and that Eberle's selection was a result of pay-to-play politics and reward for Eberle's support of the Republican party.
Panzer refuted Jarvis' assertion and said the change in township professionals comes with the change in the board's party majority.
"We have selected a new management team," said Panzer. "The taxpayers will be the judge of whether or not we made a favorable decision."
The management moves were possible due to the addition of Mark McKee to the board of supervisors. He defeated Democrat Jim Scott in November's and replaced outgoing Democrat Gail Johnson. McKee and township auditor Tom Davis were sworn into office by District Judge Daniel Finello at the beginning of Tuesday's meeting.
"I hope I enjoy serving as much as I enjoyed campaigning," said McKee. "I look forward to working with all the members of the board to improve the township."
Volunteers who finished their terms serving on various township committees were presented with commendations and thanked for their service. A special note of gratitude was extended to the members of the Tricentennial Committee, including chairperson Finello and McKee. With the tricentennial celebrations , the committee will return to its original designation as the Historical Preservation Committee.