The Wyoming County Commissioners used $80,000 of Act 13 funds for a six-year contract with Pictometry for a mapping system that Wyoming County 911 and the assessment office utilize.
Commissioner Judy Mead explained that $80,000 was originally taken out for another project that the state was going to do, but the project ended up not happening.
“So we took that $80,000, added it to this, and reserved that money to do the six-year project, which will include I believe two fly-overs and a lot of digital imagery,” Mead said.
A revision request from the Department of Community and Economic Development for 2015 and 2017, plus a three-year project extension for 2014 and 2015 were also ratified.
As part of Community Development Block Grants, Mead said this is related to housing and redevelopment projects.
“The CDBG, the regular one we get every year, they’re revising that because they’ve been working so much on these other projects that they revised those so that they can extend them and complete those,” Mead explained.
There have not been a lot of applications recently for CDBG funds, Mead said, as it’s sometimes difficult to find projects that fit into the specific categories.
Rick Wilbur responded that one of the reasons for the lack of applications is townships having to “jump through so many hoops” for CDBG projects.
In regard to the Wyoming County Correctional Facility, the commissioners approved the promotion of correctional officer Cheverly Chichura from part time to full time, effective June 9.
Zachary Beeman, a part-time correctional officer hire, was approved at $12 per hour, effective June 19.
The commissioners also accepted the resignation of Makayla Cole from the correctional facility, effective June 6.
Lori Bennett asked why the correctional facility’s turnover rate seems to be high and questioned if exit interviews are conducted to find out the causes for employees leaving.
Commissioner Tom Henry and Chief Clerk Bill Gaylord responded that some employees stay for years and end up retiring from the jail.
However, Henry said others quickly realize it isn’t the right job for them.
“It’s not an easy job. It’s not an easy job to fill,” he said. “We’re always looking for people. It’s not just the pay, it’s some of the stuff they have to do.”
He said he speaks with employees before they leave and also has letters of resignation that show the reasons for leaving the correctional facility vary.
The commissioners also signed Children and Youth purchase service agreements and service purchase contracts for Blue Star Preschool Learning Center, Northampton County Juvenile Detention Center and Valley Youth House.
The commissioners ratified an addendum to the program management agreement for The Emergency Food Assistance Program for the Bureau of Food.
Solicitor Paul Litwin plans to advertise the County Solid Waste/Recycling Ordinance for July.
The commissioners made a proclamation for HANDS of Wyoming County Executive Director Cathy Franko, who was named Tunkhannock Business and Professional Women’s “Woman of the Year.”
“Cathy has always been a helping hand to all and has been an inspiration to her family and community,” Henry said in the proclamation.
The public is welcome to join in on honoring Franko this Saturday with a luncheon at the Moose Lodge at 11 a.m. RSVPs are necessary and can be made by contacting Barb Landon at 570-240-1955.
Commissioner Michael Stabinsky said the first step of active shooter training for county employees has been rolled out. Once reports from supervisors come in, the next step can be taken.
Stabinsky mentioned that a public defender approached him about a suboxone program at the jail, which he has more questions about.
Wyoming County will purchase a large memorial flag at close to $400, which should be ready by the Fourth of July.
Henry was made aware that when local emergency personnel need a flag of this size, which are typically around 18 feet by 30 feet, they have to borrow it from another county.
“I didn’t realize that we didn’t have one,” he said. “So the county is going to buy a flag… That way, all the fire companies, all the emergency personnel, and anybody that needs to borrow it can sign it out from us.”
After a television news story about Smart 911 aired, Henry said 61 new profiles were registered. He again encouraged everyone to sign up for Smart 911 to help streamline emergency response.
The Wyoming County Commissioners are scheduled to meet again on Tuesday, June 25, at 9 a.m.