2017 Judicial Guide for November 7th Election

October 31, 2017 | 21 comments | Posted in abortion, Family, Life, Politics, pro-life, Religious Freedom, Supreme Court, Voting | Tags: , , , ,

Tuesday, November 7th, 2017 is Election Day. Voters across Pennsylvania will be voting for municipal offices (Mayor, City Council, Township Supervisor, Sheriff, Recorder of Deeds, School Board member, etc.) and Judicial candidates.

To help you in your voting decisions, Pennsylvania Family Council is proud to present our Judicial Voter’s Guide (we will add responses as they become available):

Statewide Races

View our printable PDF guide. – Updated 10/9/2017

Ballot Question

This election there is a question on the ballot proposing a constitutional amendment – Amending the Homestead Property Tax Assessment Exclusion.

May 19 - Primary ElectionCounty Races – Court of Common Pleas

Not all counties have open judicial seats. For the counties listed below, the candidates who responded are linked for you to read their response to our questionnaire. (A good faith effort was made to survey all judicial candidates but we can only publish the responses we have received.)

Allegheny County (choose 2)
David Lee Spurgeon (Dem)          Patrick Connelly (Dem/Rep)          Mary McGinley (Rep)

Armstrong County (choose 1)
Scott Andreassi (Dem)          Chase McClister (Rep)

Beaver County (choose 2)
Deborah Lancos Decostro (Dem)     Mitchell Shahen (Dem/Rep)    William Braslawsce (Rep)

Berks County (choose 1)
Tina Boyd (Dem)          J. Ben Nevius (Rep)

Blair County (choose 1)
Jackie Bernard (Dem/Rep)

Bucks County (choose 1)
Jeffrey Trauger (Dem/Rep)

Centre County (choose 1)
Brian Marshall (Dem)          Ronald McGlaughlin (Rep)

Dauphin County (choose 3)
Lori Serratelli (Dem)                  Ed Marsico (Dem/Rep)
Royce Morris (Dem/Rep)          John McNally (Rep)

Delaware County (choose 1)
Kelly Eckel (Dem)          Jack Whelan (Rep)

Indiana County (choose 1)
Patrick Dougherty (Dem)          Mike Clark (Rep)

Lackawanna County (choose 1)
Julia Munley (Dem/Rep)

Lancaster County (choose 1)
Jeff Conrad (Dem/Rep)

Lehigh County (choose 1)
Melissa Pavlack (Dem/Rep)

Lycoming County (choose 1)
Eric Linhardt (Dem/Rep)          C. Kilgus Mary (Ind)

Montgomery County (choose 2)
Jeffrey Saltz (Dem)          Wendy Rothstein (Dem/Rep)          Joseph Walsh (Rep)

Philadelphia County (choose 9)
Deborah Canty (Dem)          Deborah Cianfrani (Dem)          Lucretia Clemons (Dem)
Mark Cohen (Dem)               Shanese Johnson (Dem)            Vikki Kristiansson (Dem)
Zac Shaffer (Dem)                 Stella Tsai (Dem)                        Vincent Furlong (Dem/Rep)

Somerset County (choose 1)
Daniel Rullo (Dem/Rep)

Washington County (choose 1)
Brandon Neuman (Dem/Rep)

Wayne County (choose 1)
Janine Edwards (Dem/Rep)

Westmoreland County (choose 1)
Lisa Monzo (Dem)          Anthony Bompiani (Dem/Rep)          Jim Silvis (Rep)

York County (choose 3)
Sandra Thompson (Dem)          Kathleen Prendergast (Dem/Rep)
Clyde Vedder (Dem/Rep)          Amber Anstine Kraft (Rep)

Retention candidates – vote Yes or No to retain them in their current position

Unfortunately, none of the retention candidates (statewide or county courts of common pleas) responded to our questionnaire, even with repeated attempts.

Allegheny County – Kelly Eileen Bigley, Cathleen Cawood Bubash, Michael Edward McCarthy, Jack McVay, Jr.

Armstrong County – James Panchik

Beaver County – Kim Tesla

Berks County – Timothy Rowley

Bucks County – Diane Gibbons

Butler County – Marilyn Horan, Kelley Streib

Centre County – Pamela Ruest

Chester County – David Bortner, Katherine Platt

Clinton County – Craig Miller

Cumberland County – Edward Guido

Delaware County – Mary Alice Brennan, George Pagano

Lackawanna County – Patricia Corbett

Lancaster County – Christopher Hackman, Howard Knisely, Margaret Miller, Jeffrey Reich, Donald Totaro, Jeffrey Wright

Lehigh County – James Anthony, Maria Dantos, Robert Steinberg, Michele Varricchio

Luzerne County – David Lupas

Montgomery County – Thomas Del Ricci

Northampton County – Stephen Baratta

Philadelphia County – Linda Carpenter, Ellen Ceisler, Michael Erdo, Shelley Robins New, Rosalyn Robinson, Teresa Sarmina

Pike County – Gregory Chelak

Schuylkill County – William Baldwin, Jacqueline Russell

Venango County – Robert Boyer, Oluver Lobaugh

Westmoreland County – Rita Donovan Hathaway

York County – Richard Renn, Gregory Snyder


Emily Kreps

Not all counties have open judicial seats. If yours is not listed (like Erie), there are no open seats. The same is true for the retention candidate listings. Not all counties have judges up for retention (like Erie).

Jean Bednar

Michael, Dan, Emily, et al,
We so appreciate your making this information available for voters across our commonwealth! Informed voters help us in our efforts to have good government! May God continue to bless your efforts! Jim & Jean Bednar

Carolyn O

I agree 110% with the Bednars. thanks for all you do day in and day out. Truly faithful servents of the Lord! co

Fawn Duttry

Thanks for doing the hard research for us, & for helping us to protect our families & rights! Yours is a trustworthy organization & I am extremely grateful.

Tim Kiser

Thank you for taking the time to gather this important information and for making this available to voters across the Commonwealth. This is the best voter guide I have seen and I urge all voters to read the responses of the candidates. Thank you for providing voters important information from the candidates themselves. In this day of instant, and often misleading attack ads, this is a breath of fresh air.

Greg Lorenz

The Homestead act proposal. Just what does it presently do and if we vote to change it, how will PA citizens be affected. It’s very confusing

Robert Ogden

Maybe I understand this but I am only one person, so here goes my understanding of the Homestead Amendment. It first helps to know whether your property has been provided with a homestead exemption . If it has then first: your present property tax bill , which is sent to you twice a year, charges the existing tax rate on the value of what has been determined by subtracting what the taxing district personnel has calculated as the median value of all homestead exempted property in its taxing district. For example lets us assume your property has an assessed value of $100,000. Lets us also assume that the median value of all the homestead exempted property in your district is $25,000. With that information, your property would then be taxed on the assessed value of $75,000. If the voters approve the amendment to the Pa. Constitution, then the General Assembly will be permitted to pass a law authorizing local property taxing authority to not tax your homesteaded property at all. And the local taxing authority cannot increase tax rates to try and recover lost revenue. This is a good thing for those who have homestead exempted properties.

Greg Anton

There is a question on ballot on whether the Homestead Act should be changed. If the voters vote to change this law, just how would it affect what we pay on taxes?

F. Bechtoldt

Thank you for all your hard work in keeping us informed and for your faithful service. God Bless you all.

C. Y. Shultz

Your guide always helps to make an informed decision.
There hasn’t been enough local information on candidates so I came to your guide. Thanks for posting it online.
Now I feel I am not going blindly into the election booth tomorrow.


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