Six employees from the Department of Environmental Protection’s Northwest Regional Safe Drinking Water Program and Office of Chief Counsel were part of a team honored with the Legal Aid Excellence Award for their work to help residents of Hardwood Estates Mobile Home Park located outside of Conneaut Lake in Crawford County.
More than 24 people who live in the park were left without a reliable public water system after the property owner abandoned it in 2012.
The DEP employees, with the help of Legal Aid and several other organizations, helped the residents form an association and secure funding to repair the water system's chlorinator, obtain necessary permitting, hire a properly trained certified water operator, and ultimately take ownership of the mobile home park through a judicial sale in April 2015.
This action enabled the residents to remain in their homes.
"This example of your work with the general public is yet another remarkable story of DEP employees going above and beyond our day-to-day jobs and is a perfect indication of the commitment and dedication I see every day amongst your peers at DEP," DEP Secretary John Quigley said. "Congratulations for a job well done!"
The DEP employees receiving the award are Brad Vanderhoof, Matt Postlewaite, Melissa Crow, Sean Singer, John (Jack) Crow and Angela Erde.(Photo: Brad Vanderhoof, DEP Drinking Water Program Manager; Charles Scalise, Housing and Neighborhood Development Services of Erie, Carla Falkenstein P.H F.A., Wendy Carter, PathStone, Robert Damewood Esq., Regional Housing Staffing Services, Kenneth Joseph, Esq., Pepper Hamilton, LLP; and Wesley R. Payne, IV, President Emeritus of the PA Legal Aid Network, Inc.)
(Reprinted from the March 17 DEP News. Click Here to sign up for your own copy.)