Despite being promised a n opportunity to look at the money trail for $800,000 in federal flood relief for 2011, folks from Forkston Twp. were disappointed Monday when the county EMA director wasn’t there.
Meeting in the Wyoming County Commissioners office with commissioners, people learned Dziak had prior engagements and wasn’t properly informed of the meeting.
After a half hour of sorting out whether or not Dziak would be able to attend, commissioner Tom Henry ended the meeting, noting that it hadn’t been advertised as public, so the media’s presence was a concern to him.
With Dziak on the phone-line, Henry rescheduled the meeting as public for Monday, June 16, at 1 p.m. in the commissioners office.
According to the residents, Liz DeWolfe, Darlene Miller, and Charles and Joanne Price, areas designated for relief, particularly along the Mehoopany Creek, are still an eyesore after nearly three years.
“I don’t care if it’s Gene Dziak or whoever - if they have this money, why can’t they help us?” asked Miller. “It still looks like bombs went off.”
According to Miller, a right-to-know act was filed last year regarding the funds, but information was never received on the matter.
“Legally, he broke the law,” Miller said.
For the residents who showed up, as well as representatives from the Wyoming County Conservation District, Doug Deutsch and Bernie Scalzo, they just wanted answers.
Even the commissioners voiced some doubt in his reasoning, as Ron Williams referred to Dziak’s absence as a ‘run-around.’
Still, Dziak said he had no idea about the meeting, and that it was commissioner Tom Henry’s responsibility to inform him, which Henry, in turn, was not aware of.
By and large, residents voiced concerns over future flooding and what it would mean for their properties, many of which are still recovering from damages accrued during the 2011 floodings.