A vacancy of a lieutenant and correctional officer positions exist on the staff of the Schuylkill County Prison, it was announced by Warden Eugene Berdanier to members of the Schuiylkill County Prison Board at their monthly meeting held Wednesday at the courthouse in Pottsville.

Berdanier reported the lieutenant candidate being considered recently pulled his application and the warden said he plans to call back a few applicants for another interview. He added the test results for the correctional officer candidate have not been finalized and received. Currently, there are three correctional officers and a program secretary off duty on extended medical leaves and one correctional officer on restricted duty for a work release condition.

Berdanier told the board a staff member detected an inmate in the work release area was trying to receive cigarettes from visitors through a small hole in a front window. The inmate was removed from the housing unit and issued a misconduct and the window was repaired.

The warden reported the number of inmates had dropped below 300 for the first time in many months. The population as of now was 224 males and 66 females and the number of cells housing three inmates was reduced in half to 31 cells.

PrimeCare Medical, Inc., Harrisburg, which provides physicians and nurses at the prison, reported 226 inmates were on sick call in June, 58 saw psychiatrist, 21 saw a dentist and 18 were on suicide watch with no incidents happening.

Twenty-three inmates with employment are in the work release section. Eleven inmates participated in the Vocational Rehabilitation Program with six being removed from the program for violation of prison or work release policies. Eleven female inmates participated in the work release program. The monthly revenue derived from the work release section was $3,564 for room and board and $1,080 towards their fines and costs. Jack Jakubowski, director of the Lancaster Teen Challenge, presented a program to the inmates to help change their lives.

President Judge Willliam E. Baldwin chaired the meeting.