Commissioner Gary Hess, who holds the position as the minority commissioner on the Schuylkill County Board of Commissioners because of his political affiliation, abstained from voting on replacing members serving on boards or authorities.

Hess abstained from casting a vote and his reason was he was sorry to see members whose terms are expiring at the end of the year not reappointed because they were all dedicated to their job, attending all meetings, and made proper decisions, however, the new members appointed were also qualified citizens who would not reduce the value of the boards.

Hess is a Democrat. The majority of the board, Chairman Frank Staudenmeier and George Halcovage, Republicans, have the majority vote and at the commissioners' work session Wednesday at the courthouse in Pottsville made appointments as follows:

Schuylkill County Municipal Authority - Roy Heim and John Boyer, both of Orwigsburg, were apponted for a five-year term beginning Jan. 1, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2018, on the board of directors. They replace Charles Dries, Palo Alto, and Corey Halbet, Pottsville.

Schuylkill County Airport Authority - Dr. Austin Kelly, Orwigsburg, was appointed to a three-year term on the board beginning Jan. 1, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2016. He replaces Tom Joulwan, Schuylkill Haven. Tony Baran, Ashland, was apoointed to the board for a five-year term from January 1, 2014 through December 31, 2018 to fill the vacancy caused by F. Dale Schoeneman, Orwigsburg, who is retiring after a long tenure as the chairman. Commissioner Hess paid tribute to Schoeneman on his leadership and vision and the continued development of the county airport located in Foster Township and Commissioners Staudenmeier and Halcovage joined in the tribute.

Schuylkill County Housing Authority - Mary Beth Dougherty, Girardville, was named to the board for a five-year term from January 1, 2014 through December 31, 2018, replacing Edward O'Brien, of Coaldale.

Schuylkill County Zoning Hearing Board - Scott Thomas, Pottsville, was appointed to the board for a three-year term beginning January 1, 2014 through December 31, 2016. He replaces Dr. David Ambrose, Pottsville.