Northampton County Commissioner Tara Zrinski to Run for Pennsylvania Senate in the 14th District | Lehigh Valley Regional News
Tara Zrinski dropped out of her run for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives when a sudden redistricting placed her in another Democrat’s district.
The Northampton County Commissioner has now set her sights higher with a bid for the state’s new 14th Senate District seat, which includes parts of Lehigh and Northampton counties.
“We need a functioning economy that works for everyone and responsible leadership whose political influence is not for sale,” Zrinski said in a statement. “That means building a stronger middle-class economy, leveling the playing field for working families who want fair wages, health care, quality education, and real solutions to grow our economy despite the pandemic. “
Greg Zebrowski, former member of Northampton County Council and former chairman of the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, and Hannah Zabitz will lead the campaign. Zrinski and Zebrowski will discuss his candidacy at a campaign event Thursday at noon at Seventh and Hamilton streets in Allentown.
Zrinski said she would build a multiracial coalition based on economic and environmental justice. She supports unionized jobs and “tackles the affordability of everything from housing to health care,” according to her statement.
Zebrowski said the nominee will address issues of warehouse development and proliferation that he has often addressed as chairman of the planning commission.
“I’m confident Tara will not only be a strong conservationist, but respond to the development pressures the Lehigh Valley is facing,” he said. Zebrowski and others said state law needs to be changed to guide development on a more sustainable path.
Until Friday afternoon, Zrinski planned to report to the 137th State House district. Then a late redistricting cut it narrowly from that district, leaving it in the 135th, represented by Democrat Steve Samuelson. She said Monday she would not challenge Samuelson in a primary, saying he had been a mentor to her. The boundary line in the district was Harriet Lane in Hanover Township.
“I live on Harriet Lane,” she said Monday. “If I lived across the street on Harriet Lane it would be fine.” Instead, she was out of 137th and a race against Republican Rep. Joe Emrick.
Zrinski has served on Northampton County Council since 2017 and was the top voter in the last election. She heads the Energy, Environment and Land Use Planning Committee. She is also a member of the Lehigh-Northampton Airport Authority and the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, and she led a committee that explored the cultivation of industrial hemp. She created a Karst Advisory Board to deal with the frequent loss of water at Bushkill Creek.
She was born and raised in Bethlehem Township and now lives in Hanover Township (Northampton County). In her statement, she lists jobs as an adjunct professor of philosophy at Northampton Community College, DeSales University, Lehigh University and Carbon Community College.
Zrinski holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and English from Drew University and a master’s degree in theological studies and pastoral counseling from Moravian Theological Seminary.