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Tax Collector: Supervisor's Investigation a 'Personal Vendetta'

Ellen Jarvis claims that the township has overpaid Barbara Loftus for her services in 2010 and 2011. The board's decision to not place the matter on the next agenda sparked Jarvis' public resignation last week.

Warminster Township Manager Rich Manfredi has received written confirmation via e-mail from Supervisor Ellen Jarvis that she is stepping down from office. Jarvis herself as affirmed her intentions in the comments section of Warminster Patch, writing, "I have provided a resignation in writing to the Township Manager and have turned in my keys."

Manfredi has scheduled a special public meeting for Thursday at 6:00 p.m., where the remaining township supervisors will review the letter and decide whether or not to accept it. It's a safe bet that the resignation will be accepted, which will start the 30-day clock to find a replacement.

Jarvis' public resignation came at the end of last Thursday's supervisors meeting. She asked the board to add a full discussion to the next meeting's agenda about what she saw as overpayments made to Warminster Tax Collector Barbara Loftus for her services. The rest of the board denied the request based on township solicitor Mary Eberle's statement that she had found no wrongdoing after conducting her own review. Jarvis then said she resigned and left the meeting.

In a letter that Jarvis sent to the Warminster supervisors and township administration and forwarded by Jarvis to Warminster Patch, she lays out her evidence for the accusations.

In 2008, Jarvis writes, the township passed a resolution that set the tax collector's compensation for 2010 at $24,638 and $25,377 for 2011, plus reimbursements for office supplies and postage. A copy of Loftus' W-2, attached to the letter, shows that she received $46,148.92 in 2010 and $46,794.06.

According to the letter, the source of the large payment difference is a $1,500 per month service fee the township paid to Loftus for collecting and remitting trash collection assessments. Jarvis states that this service fee is redundant to the flat salary Loftus earns, highlighting a section of the 2008 resolution that says the elected tax collector for Warminster shall receive a compensation "for the collection of all taxes and assessments levied by said township (emphasis added by Jarvis) an annual salary in accordance with the following schedule ..."

  • 2010: $24,638
  • 2011: $25,377
  • 2012: $26,138
  • 2013: $26,922

Loftus denies any discrepancies with her compensation payments, saying that trash collection is a fee, not a tax and therefore not covered by the 2008 resolution.

"This is part of a personal vendetta," Loftus said. "She doesn't like me because I am a member of the other political party and a practicing Catholic."

Manfredi also denied Jarvis' allegations that there has been any cover up of the payments, saying that her document requests her fulfilled in a timely manner. He says that the personnel issue became a legal matter when Jarvis asked Eberle for her opinion.

Jarvis made headlines in 2011 when she was removed from her position as Chairwoman of the board of supervisors after it was revealed she did not pay monthly premiums to the township employee health benefit plan from February to May 2011. The board also ordered repayment of the missed premiums, which Jarvis states in her comment on Tuesday that she has fulfilled.

Pete Krenshaw February 23, 2012 at 08:18 PM
All we ever see is you publicly defaming Bobbie Loftus for some years now. I have seen nothing going the "other direction". You have attacked her on multiple occasions from the dais, trying to have her removed from the administration building, accusing her of being untrustworthy around the files and now again accusing her of being overpaid. Then you accuse everyone else of a coverup. The solicitor and the township manager have publicly stated they have reviewed this issue and there is no wrong doing and then you publicly accuse them of being unbiased and defame their reputation as well. You want to continue wracking up professional fees by hiring yet another person to review the files. This while there are plenty of other items needing the Township's attention. You try to claim a Republican bias but that argument holds no water as Frank Feinberg, your fellow Democrat, is against you. So then you claim gender bias. This whole wretched game you play is vile and disgusting. We can only pray it is truly behind us. You are the snake who needs to go back under the rock from which you have slithered out from. The Township doesn't need the likes of you seeing the "light of day", wasting time, money and other township resources any more.
Sarah Ronzelli February 23, 2012 at 08:57 PM
"Yes, perhaps I am more passionate and emotive; I am a woman" states Jarvis! Come on, you were a public official, please don't start the woman thing!! People like you who set themselves up as savior of the public must not have any skeletons in their closets. You screamed and yelled about Loftus's health insurance. Not telling the public Loftus was paying for her health insurance. Then you decide to go on the Township insurance policy and think you were entitled to the coverage. Oops, you did not want to pay for coverage! Well after you got caught, the Supervisors took your Township check and deducted the amounts for coverage. Now that you have resigned, how are you going to pay the amount you owe the Taxpayers for your past coverage??
Sarah Ronzelli February 23, 2012 at 10:28 PM
"if you want to contine to keep your head underground looking for truth, just remember what part of your anatomy is in the air.stated Jarvis." Oh my goodness, that is your statement, well now I know how narrow your thought process really is!
Tired of Hypocrisy February 24, 2012 at 09:43 AM
If I had not observed the conduct of Ms. Jarvis at meetings, I would be shocked by her comments on this page. Obviously there is something more going on with her than her former position on the BoS. The anger, resentment, obscene and vile comments represent a very troubled woman. Sincerely Ms. Jarvis, please seek medical help. Your personality has taken a 180 degree turn in recent years. Medical professionals can assist you. As you have professed a love of writing and reading, perhaps you would like to review the idiom "People who live in glass houses should not throw stones". Good luck to you Ms. Jarvis.
Christopher Martindell March 01, 2012 at 02:05 AM
Explaining the trash removal process is great. Big words like consolidate, negotiate, and substantial are great. Please, no more about the how we get this benefit from this or why we chose that. Simply put .... Explain why we pay one township employee $ 18,000 a year to use a spreadsheet program once a month and send one check. How about some straight up numbers and stop misrepresenting salaries. Party alliance and religion have nothing to do with this

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