Lansford health inspector quits over pierogi spat
Lansford Borough Council is currently looking for a new health inspector after the former health inspector Richard Tower resigned on July 1.
Tower’s resignation comes after an altercation with first chairwoman of Lansford Borough Council Irma Leibensperger during a Music in the Park concert on June 30.
In the letter addressed to Lansford Borough Council President Jared Soto, Tower states he conducted an operational inspection on hot dogs and pierogies at the Lansford Alive Events Committee stand at approximately 5:30 p.m. The pierogies did not meet a proper temperature per the food code. The seller responded that the food wasn’t being sold until 6 p.m., but Tower saw him sell food to a consumer before that time. Tower offered to retest the food and told the same individual the stand did not have a license. The individual became stern, and said they did per Leibensperger.
Later Leibensperger spoke with Tower that borough council voted the committee exempt from any inspection. Tower replied that vote would be in violation of the food code.
At 6 p.m., the food was retested and all temperatures were in compliance with the food code. Then Tower completed an inspection form which granted a temporary license that would last through the duration of the Music in The Park series on Aug. 26.
Tower gave the form for Leibensperger to sign.
In the letter, Tower said, “She proceeded to explain that council had voted them exempt. I assumed that this was an exemption from the fee associated with a license, but she thought it meant exempt from any inspection. She stated that she was not aware that it only pertained to the fee.”
Leibensperger then signed the form.
Any individual or organization that offers food for a charge or free must be licensed and inspected under the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Food Code.
Tower advised council look for a new health inspector immediately due to a significant number of upcoming annual inspections and a new business expected to open later this month. Council must decide if it will advertise for a new health inspector or use Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture.