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Students from 7 area schools attend commissioners' meeting

Published April 29. 2011 05:00PM

Students from seven area high schools had the opportunity to see how Carbon County operates during the county's 11th annual Government Day.

On Thursday, students from Panther Valley, Marian, Palmerton, Lehighton, Jim Thorpe, Weatherly, and Carbon Career & Technical Institute high schools found themselves spending a day observing Carbon County officials doing what they do best, run the county.

Students had stops at the Carbon County Courthouse and Courthouse Annex in Jim Thorpe and 9-1-1 Communication Center in Nesquehoning.

They talked with various county officials in the morning and learned what goes into operating the county.

The students then attended the Carbon County Commissioners' meeting, in which they got to see how the commissioners make decisions that they feel are best for the county.

Some of the decisions that were made included accepting the weekly personnel and treasurer's report, adopting proclamations, entering into agreements with various outside companies to provide services, paying the bills, and opening bids on the home rehabilitation project.

Commissioners William O'Gurek, Wayne Nothstein and Charles Getz, thanked the students for their interest in government and explained to them about different decisions and how the county operates some programs.

Following the meeting, students were given the opportunity to ask questions on any aspects of politics or government. Some topics for questions included the qualifications that a person must have to become a commissioners, the proposed Pennsylvania budget, what the commissioners do on a daily basis, marcellus shale, and more.

The students then went to the communications center to learn about the Emergency Management Agency, 9-1-1 Communications Center, the County Animal Response Team, and County Emergency Response Team. A question-and-answer panel was conducted prior to the completion of the day.

Carbon County Government Day was the idea of Commissioner Getz, based on a similar event he ran while he served as a Kidder Township supervisor. The first county Government Day was held on April 26, 2001.

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