The downturn in the economy and an expected shortfall in revenues were cited as the reasons Mahoning Township supervisors unanimously agreed to impose a 5 percent contribution from police department employees for their pension plan in 2011.
"The reason for requiring them to contribute is due to the reduced reimbursement from the state, and budget shortfalls," said Supervisor George Stawnyczyj during the discussion. Due to the downturn in the economy the normal funding the township received this time each year to help cover the pension fund contributions was reduced although supervisors did not give an exact reduction amount.
Before the 5 percent contribution was approved, the supervisors unanimously agreed to fund the Police Pension fund in the amount of $47,307 and the non-uniformed employee pension fund in the amount of $19,162. In previous years, the state's reimbursement was much larger and in some years covered almost all of the required contribution. The bad economy though has significantly reduced the amount the township is eligible to receive toward the pension plans requiring them to cover the deficit.
In other business and after a brief executive session Mahoning Township supervisors returned to session and fired one township police officer, Amie Barclay effective immediately. Barclay was suspended last month without pay and supervisors refused to give a reason for the abrupt suspension and termination of the township officer. The vote was unanimous.
When asked for comment, Chairperson John Wieczorek said, "The reasons for termination are protected personnel matters and I will make no statement on the reasons."
In other police matters, the supervisors approved a request to by Wal-Mart for police assistance during their grand opening on October 13th, Black Friday and when the pharmacy is moved to the new store at a rate of $50 an hour. Police will assist Wal-Mart's security during those events as well as provide an escort when the pharmacy supplies are moved a mile up the road from the existing store which is scheduled to close on the evening of October 12th at 7 p.m.