Two projects funded by the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program were approved by the Schuylkill County Commissioners at a meeting held Thursday at the courthouse in Pottsville. The meeting date was moved up a day this week due to the commissioners attending the state's commissioners' association conference in Hershey.

A contract was awarded to Heim Construction Company, Pottsville, for $30,465 for the driveway replacement at the Tuscarora Fire Company in Schuylkill Township. Payments will be from the 2010 CDBG account.

A contract was awarded to Dallago Backhoe Services Inc., Marlin, Norwegian Township, for $76,622.56 for the waterline replacement project in the village of Keffers, Porter Township. Payments will come from the 2011 CDBG account.

Other business

The commissioners authorized the execution of an agreement reached in the settlement of a tax appeal initiated by Fabcon East Corporation, LLC, of Savings, MO., to fix the fair market value on its manufacturing facility located along the Morea Road in Mahanoy Township. The market value was fixed at $3,650,000 for the tax year 2012 and thereafter.

On behalf of the Human Resources Department the commissioners approved a special risk accident insurance policy for the county with CCAP Insurance programs. The cost to the county to cover 889 employees is $3,102.

Personnel matters

The commissioners approved the termination of two employees as recommended by their department heads.

Michael Mihalik, Palo Alto, was terminated as an auditor in the controller"s office. He was employed for 27 years. Ashley Ruddy, Branch Township, was terminated as a caseworker with Children and Youth Services Agency. "Personal reasons" was given for their release.

Two hirings were approved at Rest Home Home. Kathleen Law, Reading, as a part time graduate practical nurse at $15.0580 per hour, and Antonio Lesher, Pottsville, as a per diem nursing assistant at $13 per hour. Also approved was the transfer of Christine Mavricz, New Ringgold, from part time nursing assistant to full time nursing assistant at $11.72 per hour.

The commissioners were informed that nine part time nurses aides had successfully completed their training program and were entitled to a pay increase to $11.72 per hour.

They were Dakota Wills, Brandie Hamilton, Matthew Beane and Ciara Hosler, all of Pottsville; Angela Marmas, New Philadelphia; Kristi Burke, Port Carbon; Crystal Cortez, Pine Grove; Eufemia Crishock, Minersville; and Holly Kellman, Schuylkill Haven.

There were two resignations reported. Anita Keller, Saint Clair, as part time licensed practical nurse; and Angela Marmas, New Philadelphia, as part time nurse's aide.

Attorney James Crossen, West Brunswick Township, resigned from the district attorney's staff. He worked on a part time basis.

Retirement fund

After several months of a downward trend the Schuylkill County Employees Retirement Fund has done a turnabout and has started an upward trend it was reported to board members who manage the retirement fund.

Controller Christy Joy, who serves as secretary of the board, reported the total market value of the retirement fund as of July 31 as managed by 11 funding agencies, was $102,284,575 and as of Thursday.

Joy also reported during the month of July, three members who retired received annuities totaling $67,893.51; three members received refunds totaling $5,684.35; two members requested rollovers totaling $9,429.10; and one member passed away with a refund of $89,442.20.

Three of the five board members were present, Joy and Commissioners Frank Staudenmeier and Gary Hess. Absent were Commissioner George Halcovage and County Treasurer Jacqueline McGovern.