KITTANNING – Armstrong County Commissioner Chairman Pat Fabian has announced his bid to seek re-election in the May 21 primary and Nov. 5 general election.
Fabian is currently serving his first term as one of the three county commissioners.
“I feel I am a proven leader, have made the tough decisions, and am confident in my ability to produce positive results for the taxpayers of Armstrong County,” Fabian said. “I come to work for the people of the county every day, all day, and believe that the best is yet to come.”
When Fabian initially ran for office in 2015, he pushed for reducing the cost of government and keeping the tax burden off of the Armstrong County residents. He states that the decision to sell the Armstrong County Health Center was the toughest decision he has had to make over the past three years, but he feels it was ultimately the right decision for the taxpayers of the county.
“We were able to negotiate with the new owners a 98 percent employee retention, enhancement of patient care and assurances that upgrades would be made to the aging facility,” Fabian said. “Also, the building went back on the tax rolls.”
Fabian pointed out that reducing wasteful spending, downsizing the county’s asset inventory and demonstrating fiscal responsibility has resulted in zero tax increases during his term.
“I have experienced the collaboration and cooperation first hand and Armstrong County should be proud of county government’s positive changes, hard work, and the efforts among county, federal, state and local authorities,” he said.
Mostly recently, Fabian was elected vice president of the Northwest County Commissioner Association of Pennsylvania.
Fabian said he ran for office in 2015 to ensure that the taxpayers have a voice and to push for change.
“I choose to be actively involved and serve, because that is truly the only way you understand the needs of the community and to make the tough decisions that best represent the people,” he said.
Early in his term, Fabian was asked by the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania (CCAP) to join the CCAP Comprehensive Behavioral Health Task Force because of his work experience in mental health. He assisted in the development of a plan for comprehensive behavioral health reform, which resulted in a product for the counties across Pennsylvania to use as their road map.
Fabian serves on numerous boards in county government, throughout the region, and within the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania.
In discussing the future, Fabian said, “We have accomplished many things in a short period of time and the momentum is moving in the right direction, but there is a lot of work still to be done.”
Fabian said his re-election plan includes:
• More Strategic & Long-Range Planning — “In order to further chart a course for success both economically and with vital services.”
• Expanding Resources for Mental Health and Preventing Substance Abuse — “Continue to address the needs from a holistic perspective and through implementation of diversion programming to assess individuals in the community that can be directed to treatment prior to being incarcerated.”
• Rural Broadband Expansion — “Continue to work together with federal, state, local and private stakeholders to develop strategies for successful rural broadband expansion.”
• Purchase of New Election Equipment — “Assure the integrity of every step in this process and demand full state funding for voting systems to eliminate the burden on county property taxpayers.”
• Push Harrisburg and Washington D.C. for more investment in Armstrong County — “We need commissioners that are going to be advocates for our county and secure investments normally given elsewhere.”
• Consolidation of the County Economic Development Department and Planning/Community Development Department — “With limited resources, we need to come together and work in concert with each other. This would enhance the need for more business recruitment and business expansion. We need to build on our strong businesses, create a friendly environment for businesses to develop and want to come to and invest in Armstrong County.”
• Addressing County Government Infrastructure — “Work to address critical capital improvements which include: the cupula, parking lots, roofs, and the preservation of the public safety infrastructure and integrity of the county emergency operating system.
• Marketing and Tourism — “Look to brighten our Gateway communities and promote Armstrong County outside our borders. Work to focus on better ways to market the county’s trail system, water ways, and the potential for the addition of ATV trails.”