Forward meeting discussion gets ugly


  By ERIC SLAGLE Daily News Staff Writer


  A public dialogue about a recently rebuilt bridge in Forward Township led to angry words being exchanged between a township supervisor and a resident.
  Supervisor Chairman Tom DeRosa and township resident Howard Fleming traded threats and four-letter words at a public meeting Thursday.
  The mood of the meeting turned hostile after Fleming spoke during a public comment portion about bridge construction work near his home.
  Fleming contends the township did not have all the required permits for work it completed this week on a bridge that connects Ripple Road with Pangburn Hollow Road.
  He claims the work, which was conducted by township crews, runs afoul of state Department of Environmental Protection guidelines because, he says, it altered the flow of water in Mill Creek.
  As far as Im concerned they changed the flow of the creek, Fleming said after


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the meeting.
  He said structural work around the bridge narrows the flow of the creek.
  He said hes concerned that debris will jam up at the bridge during rainfall and cause the creek to overflow its banks.
  The DEP comes up with rules (township workers) are supposed to follow and they dont, Fleming said.
  In addition to contacting the DEP about the bridge, Fleming said hes also called the offices of state Sen. J. Barry Stout, DSomerset Township , and Rep. David Levdansky, D-Forward Township , to complain about possible wrongdoing in the permitting process.
  Supervisors say Fleming has a long-standing gripe with the township related to a citation he received for having a messy property years ago.
  DeRosa said he got an emergency permit from the DEP to fix the bridge and that he personally oversaw the project himself.
  DeRosa said two township workers did most of the work. The township hired the contracting firm Earth Concepts for concrete work, he said.
  DeRosa said the township engineer estimated it would cost $240,000 to rebuild the bridge.
  He said he was able to get the job done for approximately $24,000.

 
 
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NOTE:  I have never added a comment to a news article, however, in this case I have elected to provide the following comment:   The vast majority of the interchange between Supervisor Tom DeRosa and Howard Fleming occurred after the meeting.