Taking his colleagues by surprise, Chairman Dave Long announced his resignation effective Oct. 9, at the close of Tuesday night’s Springfield Township supervisors meeting.
Long said he had about 15 reasons for wanting to leave but didn’t want to go into detail. He missed three meetings in a row between May and July but gave no hint of his departure during the meeting. Just prior to his announcement, he had been discussing the township’s commitment to fire safety.
“Wow,” uttered Township Tax Collector Debby Yerger, one of only three residents who attended the meeting.
“I’m sorry to hear Dave wants to resign,” said close colleague Robert Zisko, whom Long affectionately called Robbie. “I would prefer no other comments,” replied Long, who then hurriedly exited the building.
Supervisors informally agreed to solicit individuals to serve the remainder of the Republican chairman’s term, which expires in 2021. Long had been on the board since 2011, and prior to that had served on the township’s Open Space Committee, where his diligence drew praise.
Tall and rangy, Long was a commanding presence on the board, moving meetings along briskly, and shepherding the township through the Peppermint Park dog deaths controversy, and the recent social-media-driven uproar over proposed shooting regulations.
Long had a no-nonsense approach, and wasn’t averse to cutting off colleagues and respectfully clarifying the township’s position during public comment. He spoke his mind, however blunt, recently stating the township proposed short-term rental regulations should be tabled and using an expletive to describe the pitiful condition of Peppermint Park.