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Playground politics

It's the talk of a tiny community located near Mcadoo

UPDATE: The board of supervisors in Kline Township voted to drop the pursuit of eminent domain to take the property owned by the Wargo family.

 

KLINE TOWNSHIP, SCHUYLKILL COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU)--A family insists that local government officials are making a land grab by trying to seize their property. 

It's the talk of a tiny community located near Mcadoo. The Wargo family says they are being strong armed by Township officials, something those officials strongly deny. 

"Thought this was America. I'm starting to wonder right now," Property owner Joseph Wargo said. 

Joesph Wargo insists that Kline Township Officials will do anything to get their hands on a one acre parcel of land which is home to the KeyLayres Playground. The Wargo family has owned the property for the past 20 years and allowed the Township to use it as a playgrount at no cost to taxpayers. Township officials say they offered to buy the property so they can upgrade the playground but the Wargos are not interested in selling so the township is considering taking it by eminent domain. Thats a legal process which a government entity can seize the property as long as it pays the owners fair market value. The property must be used for the benefit of the public. But the Wargos said they were blindsided at a meeting last week when the eminent domain process was announced.

"For one I think the Township are underhanded by how trhe did everything in secret behind our backs like behind closed doors. It reminds me of old time politics where you didn't have a voice," Property owner Ruth Wargo said.

"I'm not here to bash anyone or to condemn anyone saying it;s old time politics," Kline Township Supervisor Carmen Cara-Kline said.

Cara insists this is all about creating a new improved playground for children. She also said they had no other choice by to move forward with the eminent domain process.

"We've been after the Wargos for many years to obtain this property giving us the land or purchasing the land. Tbey've been reluctant to sell the land," Cara said.

And the controversy is catching the attention of Township residents like Brad Ray who supports the Wargos. 

"It smell. it stinks to high heaven. I don't know what their angle is but this is wrong in how they approached it for the residents of Kline Township," Brad Ray said. 

The Wargos say they fare that if the Township does take this once acre of land what would stop the from trying to take the other 54 acres they own is that same area? The Wargos say the will hire an attorney and fight this eminent domain effort. 

The Kline Township supervisors have called a special meeting for tomorrow night at 6:30 at the Township building to hear what the public has to say about their plans. 


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