A local business owner plans to run for Lower Macungie Twp. commissioner.

Ron Beitler, co-owner of Bar None Weddings & Entertainment, was borned and raised in the township.

"I'm running for the Board of Commissioners to continue being a part of making our township an even better place to live and work," Beitler said in a release.

"I’m running to continue to shine a spotlight on smart growth. Instead of rolling up their sleeves and implementing sound smart growth policies immediately when taking office in 2010, our current Commissioners made it a priority to instead strike a deal with a land developer that represents the antithesis of smart growth.

Within weeks of taking office they traded away two decades of open space and farmland protection in exchange for 700 acres of warehouse, strip mall and high-density housing zoning. Development of this open space and farmland could cost the township dearly in terms of our quality of life, ongoing infrastructure maintenance and cost of services such police and fire protection. My commitment is to continue advocacy for positive solutions making sure the residents of Lower Macungie have a clear alternative representing sound land use planning, smart growth principle and transparency in government. I hope to earn their support in the May 2013 Republican Primary!"

Beitler is an Emmaus High School graduate, and earned a political science degree from Slippery Rock University.

Over the past two years, he has served on various local community boards including chairman of Friends for Protection of LMT a smart growth advocacy group and the executive board of LMT Citizens for Change.

Beitler also blogs about local politics and land use/development issues for the Lower Macungie Patch.