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Operation of STS changes hands tonight at midnight

Published March 31. 2011 05:00PM

At midnight tonight the operation of Schuylkill Transportation System (STS) will be taken over by the Schuylkill County Transportation Authority consisting of nine members, in action taken by the county commissioners at their public meeting held Wednesday at the courthouse in Pottsville.

A resolution was adopted which terminated the current management contract between the county and ReDCo at midnight and all operations related to the coordinated public transit bus line be handled and administered by the SCTA which was formed last fall.

ReDCo operated the county bus line since it was formed in 1981 which has continued to grow in services provided throughout the county. It now has 14 full size buses and 28 smaller carriers which provides transportation for senior citizens. According to Michael Mika, administrator, the county paid ReDCO $3.6 million a year to operate the bus line and the money now will be used towards improving programs.

Other business

A proclamation was adopted designating the week of April 10 through 16 as "The Week of the Young Child," to pay tribute to the people who are engaged for Early Childhood Education Team, Head Start providers, Pa. Pre-K Counts providers, Keystone STARS Child Care providers, school districts and other local community partners in conjunction with the National Association for the Education of Young Children.

The proclamation states, "They are the teachers and others who make a difference in the lives of young children in Schuylkill County and deserve thanks and recognition."

A two year contract was entered with TKO Cleaning Services, Pottsville, for cleaning services at the Human Service Building, 410-420 North Centre Street, Pottsville, at a cost of $72,000.

A grant of $15,000 received for the Citizen Corps Grant Program directed to be utilized to support planning, outreach and management activities of the citizen Corps Program for the period ending Aug. 31.

A contract was entered with American Computer Associates, Pottsville, for the provision of the wireless service installation at Rest Haven Home at a cost of $17,991.

Purchase of service agreements for Children and Youth Services Agency were approved for the period July 1, 2010 through June 30 with the following:

Valley Youth Committee, Allentown, for single apartment transition rate at $11.78 per day; single apartment mother with child, $153.18 per day; and high structure mother with two Children, $263.92 per day.

Hope For Kids, State College, for foster care at $76 per day and for specialized foster care at $123 per day.

NHS Pennsylvania, Harrisburg, for foster care plus at $84.10 per day; respite care program, $90 per day; and family based life skills residential at $135.02 per day.

Concern, Fleetwood, Berks County, for medical foster care level IV at $34.10 per day; medical foster care level 1 at $81.40 per day; and community life skills residential at $135.02 per day.

A budget reduction was approved for Restrictive Intermediate Punishment Program, which is operated by the court, from $216,770 to $143,560. A grant for operating the program is received from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency. The program chiefly pertains to people charged with driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol who are placed in the program for long periods of time under probation with special restrictions in lieu of prison. The expenses are handled through the Drug and Alcohol Agency and there was no cut in service.

The savings came from reduction of expenses for medical assistance offered to those placed in the program and because many in the program had their own medical insurance there was a savings in costs

The yearly lease to mine coal on county land in Blythe Township was extended another year for Joseph P. Cromyak. He has made timely royalty payments, $1,755.20 for the year and $34,949.80 for the lease grand total.

A lease was renewed for Michael Kopinetz on a parcel of county land in Cass Township to permit him to store wood pallets. He has paid to date $13,450.

Permission was granted the Office of Solid Waste to submit an application to Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for a grant which under Act 101 adopted in 2010 allows for 50 percent reimbursement of wages, benefits and expenses incurred by the county's recycling coordinator.

Personnel matters

Susan Smith, director of planning and zoning commission, was named to serve as an alternate zoning officer during the absence of the zoning officer.

Appointed to the Executive Board of the Schuylkill County Fire Chiefs Association were, Frank Zangari, Girardville; Jason Witmier, Pottsville; Scott Krater, Schuylkill Haven; Dave Sattizahn, Pine Grove; Gary Witmier, Pottsville; and John Matz, Deer Lake/West Brunswick Township.

Appointed to the Advisory Board of the Schuylkill County Fire Chiefs Association were, Art Connely Jr., Tamaqua; Joseph Kufrovich, Barnesville; Glenn Sattizahn, Schuylkill Haven; James Krammes, Cressona; and Jack Messner and John Kellman Jr., Pottsville.

Joseph Devine, Pottsville, was appointed Geographic Information Systems (GIS) coordinator to fill the post formerly held by Susan Smith who was named planning director . His salary was set at $ 29,072 per year.

At Rest Haven Home and Hospital, Jessica Haberstroh, New Ringgold, was hired as full time payroll and billing clerk at $12.50 per hour; Alvin Kelly, Pottsville, hired as full time maintenance worker, $12 per hour; Brittany Matthews, Minersville, transferred from part time nurse's aide to full time at $11.72 per hour; Renee Shay, Orwigsburg, resigned as part time nurse's aide; Kirstin Tiffin, Schuylkill Haven, resigned as full time accounts clerk; Laurie Lockman, Schuylkill Haven, resigned as part time nurse's aide trainee; and Claudia Moyer, Saint Clair, was terminated as a part time registered nurse.

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