News Briefing
Oct 31, 2013 | 720 views | 0 0 comments | 24 24 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Conshy challenge dismissed

Commonwealth Court has declined to reconsider its dismissal of James D. Schneller’s legal challenge to Conshohocken’s LGBT-inclusive antibias ordinance

Schneller contends the ordinance, which was enacted in April 2011, violates state and federal laws that protect religious freedoms.

He also claims Conshohocken Borough Council discriminated against him as a Christian by not letting him speak at two council meetings in 2011.

On Aug. 21, a three-judge panel of Commonwealth Court dismissed Schneller’s challenge as meritless.

But on Sept. 30, Schneller filed a petition asking the court to reconsider its dismissal.

On Oct. 23, the court dismissed Schneller’s petition, without elaboration.

Borough solicitor Michael J. Savona expressed satisfaction with the dismissal.

“I’m pleased that Conshohocken’s ordinance has withstood Schneller’s attack,” Savona told PGN. “Hopefully, this will mark the end of his legal maneuvering.”

But Savona acknowledged that Schneller has the right to appeal to the state Supreme Court.

Schneller had no comment for this story.

The ordinance at issue grants civil-rights protections to LGBTs and other groups in the areas of housing, employment, public education and public accommodations.

Violators face a fine of $500 — and up to 90 days in jail — for each offense.

In a separate matter, the court said Schneller could proceed with his challenge of Haverford’s LGBT-inclusive antibias ordinance, now that he’s paid the $73.50 filing fee.

Schneller wanted to proceed as a pauper. But the court refused to waive the filing fee, noting that Schneller has income from a trust fund that includes a weekly cash payment.

Both municipalities continue to implement their ordinances, despite Schneller’s legal challenges.

Vacancies on Haverford’s antibias panel

There will be two openings on Haverford Township’s human-relations panel in January.

The seven-member panel enforces the township’s LGBT-inclusive antibias ordinance, but it doesn’t have any openly LGBT members.

“I hope someone fabulous will apply,” said Lou DeVecchis, an openly gay Haverford resident.

Applicants must be township residents and will be expected to serve for at least three years, according to the township’s website.

The deadline for submitting an application is Dec. 2.

The township’s board of commissioners will interview applicants sometime in December, but an exact date for the interviews hasn’t been determined.

Applications may be sent to the township’s municipal building, 2325 Darby Road in Havertown.

— Timothy Cwiek LGBT-friendly senior apts still leasing

The John C. Anderson LGBT-friendly senior apartments are still leasing for units.

Seniors who are 62 or older and make $28,000-$33,000 a year can still apply for units available in that category.

For more information, call the leasing office at the William Way LGBT Community Center at 267-428-0269 or drop in to 1315 Spruce St. to pick up an application.

Hair competition comes to Voyeur

The region’s top salons will come to Voyeur Nightclub, 1221 Saint James St., for Universal Warrior, a fantasy hair competition, from 8 p.m.-midnight Nov 2.

Stylists will compete to show off their best out-of-this-world styles.

The competition will benefit cancer-care center City of Hope and will feature a judge panel including Josh Middleton, AD Amorosi and Tony Luke Jr.

For more information, visit

Benefit concert for child victims

The Philadelphia Children’s Alliance will host a benefit concert from 6-10 p.m. Nov. 6 at the World Café Live, with proceeds benefiting the agency’s work on behalf of victims of child sexual abuse.

The Movin’ On Benefit concert will feature such artists as Lauren Hart, Clif Hillis, Nik Everett, Minerva and The Caulfields.

The concert, along with Music Empowering Children of Abuse’s new album, “Movin’ On,” will help empower children who have been victimized.

Tickets are $15 and donations of teddy bears will be accepted for children served by PCA.

For more information, visit

— Angela Thomas

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