The West Penn Township Board of Supervisors has a new chairman.
Incumbent Supervisor Alfonso Martinez was elected to chair the board Monday night during its reorganization meeting for 2010.
Martinez takes over for Randy Troxell, who served as chairman each year during his six-year term, which ended when James E. Akins was elected as supervisor in November.
David Zeigler, the other incumbent on the board, will remain as vice chairman.
Karen Wittig was reappointed as township treasurer, at an annual salary of $17,302.
The board will advertise for the positions of office secretary and board secretary. Wittig was appointed as temporary board secretary for signatory purposes on matters that require a secretary's signature or township seal.
Martinez encouraged township residents to apply for the secretarial positions.
Herbert Woodring was reappointed as office clerk at $11.14 per hour. Sabrina Miller will serve as recording secretary for the West Penn planning commission at $10.50 per hour.
Jeremy Frable was retained as group leader, the position formerly known as road foreman, at a salary of $16,080.
Attorney Gretchen D. Sterns, of the law firm of Gillespie, Miscavige, Ferdinand and Baranko, Pottsville, was hired as township solicitor at a retainer of $200, with a salary of $100 per hour. Sterns, a township native, replaces Attorney Paul J. Datte, Pottsville.
Holly Heintzelman will remain as solicitor for the township's zoning hearing board at a salary of $95 per hour.
The board tabled the hiring of Michael Miller as labor attorney. Akins questioned Miller's salary request of $240 per hour. "Why is it so high? Should be look into another quote?" asked Akins.
Martinez noted Miller's price might be at that level because his services are specialized to labor relations. The township's work crew is unionized and is entering the final year of its current contract.
Rettew, Schuylkill Haven, was retained as the township's engineering consultant, at the cost of $100 per meeting. Lehigh Engineering will be paid $67 per hour as West Penn's Uniform Building Code consultant.
Harry Barron will once again serve as a part-time code enforcement officer at $3,009 per year. Barron was also appointed to the vacancy board.
William Brior, Sugarloaf, remains sewage enforcement officer as per an approved fee schedule. Bruce Dobash will serve as an alternate SEO.
Brian Johnson was rehired as police chief at an annual salary of $41,537.60. Full-time police officers include Jason Lorah, $17.89 per hour; Melissa Johnson, $17 per hour; and John Kaczmarczyk, $14 per hour. Part-time officers will be paid $13.50 per hour and work on an as needed basis.
At the police chief's request, the board will advertise for two part-time officers, which will be used to replace two other part-timers.
The township currently has a force of eight officers.
The following were hired as equipment operators: Larry Faust and John Garber, $15.70 per hour; and Joe Fritz, Dale Faust, Troy Hartman and James Balliet at $14.35 per hour. All others will be paid at $14.27 per hour.
Sandra Fritz was hired as a cleaning person and Kyle and Tina Hoppes for ground maintenance at $9.71 per hour.
Leroy Breiner was reappointed as the township's volunteer fire chief. Named as acting chiefs were Dennis Fritzinger, Jr., Scott Soley, Dennis Fritzinger, Sr., Clint Schock, Brian Johnson and Melissa Johnson.
Dennis Fritzinger, Jr., was named as West Penn's emergency management coordinator, with Kevin Mengel as assistant coordinator.
Berkheimer Associates was retained as the township's tax collector for delinquent, earned income and occupational privilege taxes.
Doug Houser was reappointed to the property maintenance appeals board, and Roseann Georgiades and John Wickizer were renamed to the planning commission.
James Dean was named to the zoning hearing board, replacing Charles Schroding, who will remain as an alternate.
Zeigler was named as the board's voting delegate to the state convention, open records manager and will serve as the board's liaison for personnel and employee relations. Martinez will be police liaision and Akins will be liaison with the road crew.
Akins said he hopes each department will meet on a monthly basis to review current projects.
Akins will be the board's representative to the Eastern Schuylkill Recreation Commission, which he currently chairs. The board will have to appoint another resident as its second ESRC representative.
The supervisors will meet on the first Monday of each month at 7 p.m. except for the months of April, July and September, when they will meet on the following Monday.
During the board's regular meeting, a discussion regarding disbursement of township funds to the Andreas Fire Company was tabled until Sterns, as new solicitor, has a chance to examine the matter.
The board will also send a letter of commendation to Daniel Miller, a member of Boy Scout Troop 755, Clamtown, for the completion of his Eagle Scout project.