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Letter to Editor
Posted January 3rd, 2013

DO NOT REBUILD TAPPAN HISTORIC BRIDGE

Dear Sirs,

Your recent story about rebuilding the Historic Tappan Bridge was quite eye-opening, thank you, as you have depicted how the superintendent of highways is not only totally incompetent and derelict of his duties, but now planning to waste useful capital resources, taxpayers funds, to rebuild a bridge that does not need to be rebuilt now or in another five years. “Even if a bridge is rated structurally deficient, (and this one isn’t), it is still safe,” said Joe Dee, spokesman for the New Jersey Department of Transportation. “It means the bridge no longer functions as well as it did when it was new and elements of the bridge need attention.”

Bridges classified as structurally deficient can still be safe, but may require significant maintenance and repair, or restrictions such as weight limits, according to the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. So the question before the house seems to be Why? Why in this economic climate, where many Rockland towns are in the red because of public officials’ unnecessary overspending, why does the superintendent of highways feel a grant from 2008 needs to be spent.

Why does he think he can close down any taxpayer funded and maintained public road. Is this not an obstruction of commerce? Didn’t he, the highway superintendent and ol’ skippy vazzetti do this same thing on the Mayer Ave. bridge in Suffern recently? That bridge was a $100,000 fix at most. Why did they cause the taxpayers to fork over over $1 million in repairs and close the bridge for two years.

Isn’t he, the highway superintendent, doing the exact same thing right now on the Montebello Ave. bridge in Suffern? Doing the same thing again and again? Unnecessary work, unwanted work, needless work. It bears repeating. Read the words of the highway officials above on shutting down bridges, then wake up,stand up and speak up.

Sincerely,
Ernest van den Heuvel
Stony Point