Inspector Change and Apparent Tree Damage Covered During NJ Water Project Update

When the North Judson Town Council met last Monday, CommonWealth Engineer Intern Sarah Prizio shared that there was recently a change to who is representing their firm on site. 

She explained “We’ve had a new resident project representative or inspector. He’s not new to the company, he’s actually one of our better inspectors who’s been with us the longest but he’s just new to the North Judson job.”

Town Superintendent Joe Leszek mentioned that he met with the new inspector Wayne Boyer. Leszek said he seemed knowledgeable and good to work with and that he was happy to have him aboard.

The council unanimously passed a motion that accepted Boyer as the new inspector and permitted President John Rowe to sign the associated documentation that was required by the funding agencies.

Prizio explained that the former inspector had to be moved to another project. In the interim, she was spot inspecting and was on site whenever work was being conducted.  

However, due to some last minute rearrangements toward the end of June, there was a day where she was unable to be in Norwayne Field while contractors were working.

She noted, “They were supposed to be here Thursday and then Thursday morning while I’m on the road to North Judson they called me and said ‘Hey due to rain we can’t be there until tomorrow.’ And I said ‘Alright, well I don’t know if I can schedule somebody that fast to be there.”

During that time, a tree in the park was apparently damaged. Prizio said once she was aware there was a problem she came into town to check it out for herself.

Prizio told members, “After Joe [Leszek] called and talked to me, I came up and did a site visit and took pictures and we have a picture with clear track marks going right around the tree so as of right now it’s CommonWealth’s position that the contractor has to pay to repair it.”

She said they’ll be holding retainage until the damage is paid for. She also noted that the contractors originally claimed they were not responsible. However, the photos she took and timeline seem to paint a different picture.

She explained, “The bottom line is when I was here Thursday, there was no damage. They were on site actively working Friday and Monday.”

Prizio continued, “Wednesday I was on site, took the pictures so between Thursday and Tuesday it was damaged and they were the only ones on site working.”

She asked the members how they would like to have the tree repaired. The council members discussed it briefly, noting that it was more of a shrub-like bush but it was quite tall.

They agreed to coordinate with Park Board members to get their input on how they’d like to proceed.

Prizio added that Inspector Boyer will be on site for the remainder of the Water project and will serve in a similar capacity for the upcoming Wastewater project.