Two Bensalem councilmen sworn in, leadership reorganized

Bensalem Council started its first meeting of 2016 by swearing in two of its members for another term on Jan. 4.

Republicans Ed Kisselback and Joseph Knowles were each re-elected to serve four-year terms in November. They defeated Democratic challengers Bhasker Patel and Alex McDowell.

Knowles is beginning his third term on council. He is a lifelong resident of Bensalem — a graduate of St. Charles Grade School and Bishop Egan High School. He is a real estate broker by profession.

Kisselback has been on council for more than two decades. He has lived in the township for nearly 50 years and owns a professional photography business.

Council also reorganized leadership during the meeting.

Knowles replaced Councilman Tony Belfield as president. Belfield held the position through the entirety of 2015. Knowles served as vice president during that year.

“There were a lot of issues in 2015 and he got us through them,” Knowles said. “I appreciate everybody’s support in making me president.”

Kisselback, who is a past president, was voted to be vice president for the year. Longtime Councilman and Past President Joseph Pilieri was named secretary.

Mayor Joseph DiGirolamo also made several appointments to board and committee positions during the meeting, including new members to the Drug and Alcohol Advisory Board, Community Development Board, Veterans Affairs Advisory Board, Shade Tree Commission and Zoning Hearing Board.

Members also voted to continue the schedule of holding council meetings on the second and fourth Mondays of each month at 7 p.m. The only exceptions are Oct. 10, which will be changed to Oct. 17 because of Columbus Day, and possibly Dec. 26, the day after Christmas.

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