A roundtable discussion was held Thursday morning at the East Palestine Community Center. Business owners and community leaders discussed what improvements are still needed in the village as the cleanup continues.
While Johnson said progress is being made, he also acknowledged that he wishes it would go a little faster.
Since the derailment, those at Norfolk Southern have said they plan to help East Palestine in every way they can, and Johnson says the railroad company will continue that help.
“I would want to see progress… quicker, right? And these things take time. It’s a lot easier for people on the outside to look in and say, ‘Well, we’re making progress.’ It’s not so easy to have to live it day in and day out,” he said.
Johnson will take the ongoing concerns from Thursday to Norfolk Southern, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Ohio EPA.
“I don’t have any indication from the railroad that they’re going to back off from what they’re committed to, which is to be here for the long haul and to help this community recover,” Johnson said.
Brian Oehlbeck contributed to this report.