Lehigh County controller to run for third term
Lehigh County Controller Glenn Eckhart has announced he is running for a third term because he has become the institutional knowledge of the Lehigh County Controller’s Office.
Eckhart said when he was elected in 2011, five people in his office had more than 12 years of service to the controller’s office. Currently, and after a completion of his next term if re-elected, he will be the longest standing member in the department because of retirements.
“There is no way to teach experience, so I feel compelled to continue my role as a public servant to the citizens of Lehigh County and its future,” Eckhart said.
Eckhart said he has made a difference to the citizens of Lehigh County as a true fiscal watchdog. He said he strongly believes there is no wrong way to do the right thing and that partisan politics has no place in the controller’s office, which has been proven by his track record.
Over the past seven years, Eckhart has and continues to build a reputation among county controllers across the state and has established the Lehigh County Controller’s Office to be a credible source for having a renowned auditing department, as well as, managing a top rated ethics hotline.
Eckhart said he has been known to work across party lines in helping other controllers across the state when they are faced with a question involving a procedure or program currently being utilized in Lehigh County.
In November 2018, Eckhart announced the PA State Controller’s Summer Conference will be held in Lehigh County this year, for the first time since 1960. It is estimated the conference will generate hundreds of thousands of dollars in economic activity that would not have happened without Eckhart’s involvement and leadership as Lehigh County controller.
Most recently this year, Eckhart was selected to the executive board of the Pennsylvania State Association of Elected County Officials, making it the first time a Lehigh County row officer, county commissioner or executive, since Doris Glasman in 1995 was the chairwoman of the organization and had served as a row officer in Lehigh County.
The PSAECO is a group of row officers and commissioners appointed by their statewide organizations to help create legislation to better serve the counties in Pennsylvania with communications between the governor, the PA state house and the PA state senate.
Eckhart said he is known as a fiscal watchdog always looking for better and more efficiency as to how the county’s tax funding is spent. He said he has saved Lehigh County millions of dollars to date and will continue to strive to save millions moving forward into the future.
He has helped create several pension reforms and policy changes that received support from both Republicans and Democrats. Eckhart also continues to serve as the secretary on the Pension Board of Lehigh County.
Before becoming controller, Eckhart served in many part-time roles as an elected official. While he served on the school board of Salisbury School District, in 1998 he helped to secure a no tax increase budget for property taxpayers and during his tenure as a Salisbury Township commissioner, he led the way on two different property tax cuts. As a Lehigh County Commissioner, he helped to reduce court row officers from three members to one, saving millions of dollars over the years.
Eckhart has been a life-long resident of the Lehigh Valley, actively serving the community in many different capacities from a former director and basketball coach in the Salisbury Youth Association, to having served on the Salisbury Township Recreation Commission. He has also supported many animal and no kill shelters as a board member or as an elected official.
Along with being a small business owner for 30 years, Eckhart is also currently serving as vice president of church council at Jerusalem Evangelical Lutheran Church of Eastern Salisbury and president of the board of directors at Morgenland Cemetery, Salisbury Township.