Insurance Story Update – One Member of Borough Council Had Previously Voted for Cohen Partners as Member of Sewer Authority Board

On December 22, 2014 (minutes), Borough Council member, Anita Barton (D, Ward 4), in her role as a board member of the Conshohocken Sewer Authority, made a motion to approve Cohen Partners to handle the authority’s insurance. Why is this important, some background first.

As we have reported, Cohen Partners is the broker of record for the Borough of Conshohocken and employs Jason Salus. Salus is a one time member of Conshohocken’s Borough Council, currently serves as the treasurer of Montgomery County and is area leader for Conshohocken’s Democratic Party. The crux of our examination is that in his role as Area Leader for the Democratic Party, he encourages people to run for office and then helps them get elected. While not illegal, it doesn’t look good to have the majority party that controls Borough Council buying insurance through an employer of the person who helped get them elected.

After our article was published, we asked every member of Borough Council if they knew of Salus’ relationship with Cohen Partners and other related questions. You can see the questions here. We did not get any responses back. They also failed to address the issue in the subsequent public meeting.

On March 15, 2017, on Borough Council, Anita Baron was the member who made the motion to authorize then Borough Manager Richard Manfredi to move forward with binding the insurance. This was almost three years after making the motion involving Cohen Partners as a member of the Sewer Authority Board.

The purpose of this article is to show that at least one member of Borough Council had to be familiar with Cohen Partners and nothing was said. There was no, “They have done a great job for the sewer authority,” or any type of acknowledgement by Barton in that subsequent Borough Council meeting.

We asked her via email yesterday if she knew of Salus’ relationship with the company during this three year period.

It has been over 24 hours now and we did not receive a response. Why all the silence on this topic?

Barton (D) is currently running for re-election to Borough Council in Ward 4. Her opponent is Republican Bobby Moore, Jr.

And yes, Salus is still apparently the Area Leader for the Conshohocken, Plymouth and Whitemarsh Democrats. Even after all of this.