A Lower Makefield woman was outraged when Supervisor John Lewis was caught laughing and swearing at elderly people during an August 9 meeting about flooding in the Maplevale Drive neighborhood. Now she wants state officials to do something about his bad behavior.
Lisa Mason Contawe told Sen. Steve Santarsiero (D-Bucks), “This is your responsibility to deal with the horrific treatment of Lower Makefield township toward the flooded neighborhood of Maplevale.
“For John Lewis, a member of leadership, to disparage an elderly man is unacceptable, and to ignore the emotional pleadings of an elderly woman is an abomination. I will forward this to every church and senior center in this district. And, of course, this video and this email will be given to the opposition during election season.”
At the meeting, resident Patricia Gamble spoke about the flooding, followed by Richard Adams.
In the moments between the two, Lewis — who was participating via video stream, was heard saying “Sh*t,” and then laughing.
Gamble, 77, was uncertain whether Lewis’ rude reaction was aimed at her or Adams, who, she said, “did a lot of investigations and is trying very hard to help the township with our flooding problem.”
She was having a family party the night of the flood, and along with her husband’s car, relatives and friends also lost six vehicles. The flood left three feet of mud and muck in her basement, and she doesn’t think township officials know what to do.
“They have no idea,” she said. “I think they’re just appeasing the populace by listening to us.”
As for Lewis, “In a way, it’s disrespectful. They should be figuring out what the end game of this is. Are they going to fix the situation?”
The area has flooded before, and residents are tired of losing their cars and cleaning mud out of their homes.
“You get a little aggravated after a while,” said Gamble. “They allegedly put in drainage pipes, but I could see when they were put in, down at the corner, they were nonfunctional, and they are nonfunctional.”
“This was a massive flood,” said Gamble. “Seven people were killed in this flooding at the same time in Washington Crossing. And it could very easily have happened where we are.”
Adams, 83, told DVJournal, “I don’t care for all five of the supervisors. We need a different form of government. They don’t show any leadership at all.”
When DVJournal asked Santarsiero about Contewe’s complaint about Lewis, an email came: “My staff is looking into this and will follow up appropriately.”
Warren did not respond to requests for comment.
Lewis, however, denied that his laughter and profanity were addressed to the residents.
“I made the mistake of not being muted and handling a work issue at the time,” Lewis said.