Douglass (Mont.) Township solicitor Paul Bauer has confirmed that the township has asked the Montgomery County district attorney to investigate matters involving one of the elected township supervisors.
Responding to a question from the audience at the Feb. 18 supervisors meeting, Bauer confirmed that the township has “made a referral to the district attorney’s office within the last two months,” he told The Mercury Tuesday.
A call to the district attorney’s office Tuesday afternoon seeking comment was not returned by press time. It is the general policy of the district attorney’s office not to comment on ongoing investigations.
A reporter from The Mercury was not present at the Feb. 18 meeting.
Bauer said he could not comment further “on the nature of the investigation other than to say we referred the matter to what we feel is the appropriate agency.”
He also refused to identify which supervisor is the subject of the investigation other than to say “it is an elected supervisor.”
According to those who did attend the meeting Feb. 18 meeting, the same member of the audience who asked about the investigation, and who identified herself as “Rose” but did not give her last name, also asked about an ethics complaint against a supervisor.
That question was not answered by any officials; however, later in the meeting, Supervisor Anthony Kuklinski asked police to remove a member of the audience whom Kuklinski indicated had made a threatening gesture to him.
The other two township supervisors are Fred Ziegler and John Stasik, who is the board chairman.
This is not the first time the in the last year that turmoil has found its way to the board of supervisors.
Kuklinski has only been on the board since May after being appointed to replace former supervisor Fred Theil, who stepped down from the board of supervisors.
At the May 6 meeting at which Theil’s resignation was announced — a resignation which came about after he had been removed from the chairmanship at a previous meeting — the township issued a “joint press release” which included the following statement:
“Unfortunately, the conduct of the past several meetings has focused on the conduct of the various public officials, rather than on the important job of running the Township. In an effort to move the focus back to where it belongs: to the residents and the township business, Supervisor Fred Theil has voluntarily decided to resign his position as Supervisor effective tonight. Mr. Theil and all of the Township officials believe that the focus should be on the people’s business and not personal attacks. The entire Township thanks Mr. Theil for his dedication over the past fifteen months, and wishes him luck in the future.”
And at the same May 6 meeting at which Thiel’s resignation was accepted, Constable Joshua Stouch informed the township he was “reserving my right to file suit,” after “certain false allegations of impropriety were made to a member — or members — of the public, both in private and in a public meeting.”
Stouch added, “I would like to clarify that the statements made by the former Chairman of the Board and/or any other supervisors were personal in nature, and not professional or related to my position of State Constable.”
A month earlier, he had been unanimously appointed to the township’s open space and recreation committee.