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'Conspiracy Circus Wagon': Former Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto Responds To Criticism Raised After Bridge Collapse

By: KDKA-TV's Amanda Andrews

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- In the wake of the collapse of Fern Hollow Bridge on Friday, questions are being raised as to how this could have happened.

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Many public officials in Pittsburgh and Harrisburg have received intense criticism over the state of infrastructure in Allegheny County, especially since legislators and inspectors confirmed that other bridges were noted to be in just as bad if not worse condition than Fern Hollow Bridge.

Fern Hollow Bridge had a "poor" rating since 2011 but was not considered to be the bridge in most dire need of repairs.

Much of the backlash has been directed at former Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, who took office in 2014 and served through the end of 2021.

While Peduto has been responding to tweeted accusations all weekend, he tweeted a thread about his stance on the Fern Hollow Bridge.

Peduto, in the tweets on Sunday, railed against the "extreme binary decision making" and "conspiracy circus wagon" that he said have characterized the conversation about the bridge collapse.

"A bridge collapses in Pittsburgh, 1 of 175, rated poor in our County. Immediately extremists jump upon the conspiracy circus wagon. 'Police budgets stole critical funds - abolish the police'. 'Bike Lanes, green infrastructure & climate initiatives took priority & are to blame'," Peduto tweeted, adding in another tweet, "Obviously, both of these statements are nonsense and take away from the real debate we need to be having. Shame on any elected official or government employee who enabled this imbecilic dialogue- you don't deserve a paycheck due to your ignorance. Basic facts prove all this false."

He continued on to urge for an infrastructure bill to fund federal and state grants for local bridges.

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