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Carbon making sure seniors receive meals

Published September 12. 2011 08:28AM

Carbon County officials are working to make sure senior citizens who receive meals through the five senior centers continue to receive lunches.

During the county commissioners' meeting on Thursday, Commissioner William O'Gurek, chairman, announced that the county was experiencing a disruption in service of lunches and frozen meals to seniors at the senior centers. The reason for the disruption was because Metz and Associates, the food providers the county contracts with, is located in the Kingston area and was instructed to evacuate because of the flooding occurring as a result of the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee. Metz and Associates delivers 240 lunches a day to the five senior centers and 250 frozen meals a week to Carbon County seniors.

O'Gurek said the county Area Agency on Aging was working on finding sources to bring lunches into the senior centers for the seniors until the problem is resolved. Metz and Associates would then reimburse the county for these expenses.

"We're dealing with this as best we can," O'Gurek said.

Commissioner Wayne Nothstein added they weren't sure how long this will last before the provider will be able to fully resume its operations.

"We may have an issue for the next few days," he said.

In other matters, the county voted to enter into two settlements with former county correction officers.

O'Gurek explained in the settlement with Lisa Kite, who was discharged as a correction officer in June 2011, that Kite had filed a grievance of unfair labor practice against the county with the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board. Under the action taken by the commissioners on Thursday, the county agrees to pay Kite $3,000 and not resort to an arbitration hearing or further proceedings.

In the settlement with Michael Marrero, who was discharged as a correction officer in March 2011, O'Gurek said that Marrero filed arbitration with the Pennsylvania Bureau of Mediation that was scheduled to be heard on Oct. 6. The action taken by the commissioners agrees to pay Marrero $4,500 and not resort to an arbitration hearing or further proceedings.

"Today's action by the county, while admitting no wrong doing, effectively terminates those processes and comes to a resolution on both sides that are content with it," O'Gurek said.

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