Thursday, October 20, 2016

End of an era for Bill Adolph

There is an interesting twist on this year's election ballot.

Bill Adolph's name is not on it.

The veteran legislator who has represented the 165th legislative district for more than two decades is not seeking re-election. Instead Republican Alex Charlton and Democrat Elaine Paul Schaefer are vying to go to Harrisburg to represent residents in Springfield, Marple and parts of Radnor.

Adolph becomes the latest setback when it comes to wielding clout in Harrisburg. You can reel off the names of longtime veteran legislators who are no longer trooping out the Pennsylvania Turnpike looking out for Delaware County. Mario Civera, Nick Micozzie, Ted Erickson were all familiar names who have stepped aside.

Harrisburg is not unlike most other centers of power. It is accumulated with age. The longer you stick around the more power you wield. And in the case of money, the loss of these longtime legislators means less clout - and less money for Delaware County.

That's especially acute for Adolph, who rose to the Majority Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee. In other words, Bill Adolph had his fingers on the purse strings. He was the key man in putting together a budget plan each year.

Obviously, that has not been without its challenges, especially when voters elected a Democrat, Tom Wolf, to the governor's mansion. A standoff between Wolf and Legislature went on for months.

Yesterday Adolph took to the House floor to say farewell to his colleagues.

For 28 years Bill Adolph has been looking after the interests of his constituents - and really all of Delaware County - in Harrisburg.

He will be missed.

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