State official denies alleged sewer code violation

Under fire for doing sewer work at his Kelleys Island home without a permit, an assistant director at the Ohio Department of Health is firing back.
Tom Jackson
Dec 15, 2011

Under fire for doing sewer work at his Kelleys Island home without a permit, an assistant director at the Ohio Department of Health is firing back.

Martin Tremmel showed up at Tuesday’s Erie County health board meeting and accused health commissioner Pete Schade of being “vindictive.”

He said Schade and Bob England, the county’s environmental health director, were engaging in a “pattern of personal attacks.”

He also threatened a lawsuit — he said he’s “weighing my legal options” and his grievances include “libel and slander, conduct unbecoming of a public official, malicious prosecution, state ethics violations, discriminatory intent, collusion” and other abuses.

After Tremmel finished reading from a prepared eight-page statement, Schade offered his take.

The health department has done nothing wrong, Schade said, and he still expects Tremmel to bring his sewer system up to code.

Last month, Schade criticized Tremmel — who has served on a state technical advisory committee dealing with household sewer systems — for failing to obtain a permit to modify the sewer system at his $466,000 home on Kelleys Island.

Tremmel is also battling separate accusations he failed to obtain a permit to build a fence and pool on the property.

He lost another legal battle a few years ago when he tried to register to vote on the island. Erie County’s elections board determined he actually lives in Columbus.

As one of the state’s top experts on private sewer systems, Tremmel knew he had to obtain a permit when he modified the sewer system, Schade said.

Tremmel conceded he “probably” should have known better, but he said he never intended to violate the law and his failure to get a permit was an oversight.

He also accused Schade of trying to damage his reputation and complained the county health officials sent a letter to the state health office where he works, rather than to his home.

Tremmel insisted  nothing in the law requires him to do further work on his sewer system.

He said he was particularly upset the county health department pointed to aerial photographs of his property to show he had carried out the sewer work.

Tremmel said he was “very troubled” the health department was taking such pictures.

The health department, however, actually used aerial photos that are publicly available on the county auditor’s website, Schade said.

“He knows those pictures are on there,” Schade said.

England said he believes the code requires Tremmel to modernize his sewer system.

“He should probably read our rules,” England said.

Comments

MiddleRight

Another dirtbag politician.  I don't know what party he represents and it doesn't matter.

If you want to clear your name, produce the permits that every other citizen is required to obtain.  Otherwise, I hope that Pete sues you for defamation for calling him "vindictive".

Captain Gutz

They deserve each other.

cam

I love it. There are worse tatics the state uses when going after someone on this. He got bit by his own dogs and now wants special treatment. What if I did that and said the permit was a oversight and said I should have known better??? I know. I would be paying fines and in court. He is no different. Wait yes he is he is the states expert.

Blacktigress

Schade is an opportunist, EVERYTHING he does is to advance his opportunity for advancement. What better way to get into the State level and to possibly make those running the State Health Dept look bad.

donutshopguy

 If we don't hold public official resposible for the same laws as everyone else. Well, let just pitch out all laws.

People are watching the outcome of this government lovefest.

The New World Czar

A "public servant" making six digits (and most likely a hefty pension in the near future) with a vacation home on the island...living the American dream nowdays, right?

wiredmama222

This little bureaucrat needs a "time out" for his misbehavior.  He threatens if he doesn't get his own way like a little kid who says "I will take my ball and go home" if I can't make the rules!  So let him. 

The rules do not apply to all others and not him  He should and does know better, he just wants to see how far he can push everyone else around.  No one is trying to defame him or harass him, it is just the other way around. 

Maybe it is time to point out his way of living on the island to his superiors in Columbus and see if they can reign him in a bit. 

Perhaps it is time for his bosses to sit him down and tell him he has to follow the rules like a big boy and play fair like everyone else.  Including on his voting methods. 

If he cannot do that, maybe they should get someone who can.  

budweiserbroad

Face it. You know the rules and are simply too arrogant thinking these rules don't apply to you.  This is not the first thing you have attempted or successfully completed without following proper channels or stomping on others. Your method of operating has and continues to be to do what you want on the island and then claim ignorance when caught. Oh yeah, and to sue everyone using money that was handed to you, not earned.  How do you keep track of all these lawsuits you file or threaten to file?  You have quite the reputation on the island of being rude, mean and very a horrible neighbor.

You were wrong and got caught. Man up and quit blaming others.

mrmiddle

 Well, I did take the time to read ALL 8 pages.

interesting stuff. Seems Pete and his minions tried to extort this guy by phoning his state bosses-real jerk.

I sure don't think that's right to do this to anybody, even a government guy. do you want pete calling your boss and sending certified mail to your employer ? something is really low down about that !!

Tremmel keeps asking what is the problem with the present situation? what sewage nuisance exists ?

Guess I would want to know, too. seems reasonable enough.

Dont know 'bout you, dont want Petes cronies coming on my property accusing me of some stuff they cannot prove and haul me into his board in front of the register. If you like that, then sign up for it, invite Petes friends over to your place.

His fees seem to be paid in full for this, so what is the problem ?

if u dont like him, okay. I draw my conclusions after reading a bit-you might try it. The reponse is an attachment.

 

 

 

 

erie_angler

I'm glad SR ran this story. No fishing off Kelley's Island for me till this problem is rectified.  With my luck, I would certainly end up floating through the sewage minefield. :-D

Also, it appears as though Tremmel has his PR team doing damage control. Welcome to the SR message boards newest member, MrMiddle!