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Schuylkill spends $390K for courthouse security

Published September 13. 2018 12:51PM

Schuylkill County commissioners on Wednesday took steps to enhance safety and security at the county courthouse in Pottsville.

On behalf of the sheriff’s office, they approved a $390,890 contract with Johnson Controls Security Solutions LLC of Palatine, Illinois.

The contract will provide upgrades to the video surveillance system as well as the access control system.

Commissioners in April borrowed $5 million to pay for several improvement projects, including the security system upgrades.

County Administrator Gary R. Bender described the project.

“This was the culmination of some initial conversations I had with Chief Deputy Brian Tobin and Sheriff (Joseph G.) Groody of the deficiencies they recognized in the security system,” he said.

A committee was created, with Tobin, Groody, county Finance Director Paul E. Buber, Public Works Director Paul Fetterolf, systems specialist David Benulis and Court Administrator Lois A. Wallauer.

“Over the last couple of years, they had companies in here looking at the system. They did a bang-up job, and I particularly recognize Brian for keeping the thing going,” Bender said.

“There are a number of items that we’re keeping, as part of the Tyco system, but there are a number of new items (for security),” he said.

Groody thanked Tobin and Bender.

“It was an upgrade that was truly needed,” he said.

Commissioners’ Chairman George F. Halcovage Jr. noted the upgrades will protect the “safety and security of the courts, the employees and the general public.”

“It’s unfortunate we have to worry about security, but in today’s world, we don’t want to take any chances,” he said.

Commissioner Gary J. Hess commended the committee on its time and effort.

“The way things are going around the world and especially in this country, you never know. So we appreciate all the effort you put in day in and day out to make sure our people … are safe,” he said.

In other matters, commissioners approved hirings for the election bureau in advance of the November general election.

The bureau will hire 11 rovers, at $10 per hour plus 54.5 cents per mile to travel on Election Day to assigned polling sites or where needed.

They will start with a target date of Oct. 9, or before as needed, for the purpose of logistics/accuracy and preparation for the election.

Additional personnel to be named at a later date.

The rovers are Mike Botto, Carol Leashefski, Ron Coleman, Joe Matz, Carol Cooney-Syzdek, Jean Quirk, Janet Terefencko, Daniel Wachter, Georgene Fedoriska and Jim Gustas.

Commissioners also approved hiring 10 machine delivery drivers.

They are Kenneth Eichenberg at $170; Jason Frantz and William Klinger at $160 each; Thomas Kurtek at $140; Joe Zurat at $200; Walter Leashefski, Christine Wartman, Denise Wallace, and Diane Robbins at $210 each; and Katie Dinger at $220.

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