Coal Township commissioner resigns
COAL TOWNSHIP - A township commissioner resigned three days after being involved in a domestic dispute, but said Tuesday the two are not connected.
Gerard W. Waugh III, who was charged with summary offenses of harassment and disorderly conduct relating to an Aug. 17 incident outside a Sunbury area bar/restaurant, submitted a resignation letter Aug. 20, stating a need to spend more time with his family.
In his letter to board president Craig Fetterman, Waugh states, "I have enjoyed my time in office and believe I have brought some positives to the citizens of Coal Township. At this time, I do not feel that I am truly able to commit the time and efforts deserving to this position. My time needs to be focused on my family, especially my two young daughters, at such a critical time in their childhood. I will continue to volunteer my time and resources for this township."
Waugh, 40, of 30 Wilson Ave., Coal Township, said he was honored to work with the other commissioners and has the utmost respect for them.
He believes the commissioners will keep Coal Township moving in the "right direction."
In the letter, Waugh makes no mention of the charges filed against him or if they had any bearing on his decision to resign.
When contacted Tuesday night, Waugh said his decision to resign had nothing to do with the disturbance.
He added, "Increased responsibility in my job duties kept me away from my home and family enough and I couldn't commit the time and resources that a Coal Township commissioner is expected to commit. It's not fair if I can't give my full attention to the constituents."
Wife charged, too
Waugh and his wife, Carol Marie Waugh, 44, were cited for the same offenses by Trooper Todd Leiby of state police at Stonington in connection with a disturbance outside Dan's Den in Upper Augusta Township. The summaries were filed Aug. 20 at the office of Magisterial District Judge Benjamin Apfelbaum of Sunbury.
According to the citations, Waugh is accused of grabbing his wife by the arm, causing her sweater to rip shortly after 9:30 p.m. Police said he also allegedly chased his wife on Route 890, wrestled her to the ground and hit her in the head with his hand.
Carol Waugh is accused of slapping her husband across the face and screaming during the altercation.
Waugh said he and his wife pleaded guilty to the summaries and paid the fines and costs.
Waugh was appointed to the board of commissioners in 2010 to fill a vacancy created by the death of Albert Santor. He ran unopposed for a two-year term in the general election Nov. 8, 2011.
When reached Tuesday night for comment about the resignation, Fetterman stated, "Family life is a commitment we all value and we respect Gerry's decision to honor his family life. He was a wonderful asset to the board, especially with all the hard work he put into recreation projects."