Commissioners challenged over trees
Shade Tree Commission wants to plant at Children & Youth parking lot
POTTSVILLE — City officials want the Schuylkill County commissioners to plant shade trees in one of their parking lots and sent a representative to the board’s Wednesday meeting to make sure they know that.
Diana Beausang, a representative of the city Shade Tree Commission, told the commissioners they should plant trees in the parking lot of the Children & Youth Building, 324 N. Centre St.
“Putting trees in the ... parking lot will not only enhance the parking lot aesthetically, but trees also lessen the environmental impact of the vast expanse of macadam,” she said.
Furthermore, according to Beausang, the commissioners had promised to plant the trees there, and it would improve the appearance of the parking lot.
“The Children & Youth parking lot is a gateway to the city,” she said. “Currently, it is an eyesore. We urge you to remember your responsibility and your promise to be good neighbors to the city.”
The commissioners took no action on Beausang’s request, although Chairman George F. Halcovage Jr. and Commissioner Gary J. Hess each said the board would discuss the issue in the future.
Furthermore, County Administrator Gary Bender disputed Beausang’s statement that the commissioners had agreed to plant trees in the parking lot and said it would not be a good idea.
“There was no agreement in place,” he said. “The trees generally push up the asphalt.”
In other business, the commissioners:
• Approved a fee for service contract with Advocacy Alliance, Scranton, for caregiver check cutting, guardianship and nursing home transition. The contract cap is $17,830 per fiscal year.
• Approved a fee for service contract with Preferred Meals, Berkeley, Illinois, for $3.78 per meal, with a contract cap of $501,228.
• Approved budget adjustments for 2018 of $53 for the public defender’s office, $100 for the drug and alcohol program, $600 for the recorder of deeds office and $61,919 for the domestic relations office. County Director of Finance Paul E. Buber said each transfer is between
line items and no new spending is involved.
• Appointed Keith A. Baker to the Luzerne/Schuylkill Workforce Investment Board. His term will run through June 30, 2022.
“They feel he’s going to be an asset to the board,” Halcovage said.
• Approved the purchase of two police interceptor vehicles from Kovatch Ford, Nesquehoning, for the domestic relations office.
• Approved a contract for $29,600 with Ronnie C. Folk Paving Inc., Shoemakersville, for the county prison paving project.
• Approved agreements with lawyers James G. Conville, Schuylkill Haven, and Karen Rismiller, Pottsville, for legal services for Children & Youth. Conville will be paid a monthly retainer of $3,782.25 and $75 per hour for any other necessary services, while Rismiller will be paid a monthly retainer of $2,506.65 and $100 per hour for appeal, custody and TPR hearings.
• Opened bids for the waterfall development project for Sweet Arrow Lake County Park. Construction Masters Services, Reading, bid $477,650; Spotts Brothers Inc., Schuylkill Haven, bid $492,000; and Miller Bros. Construction Inc., Schuylkill Haven, bid $517,706.
• Hired Mary Beth Heffner, Pottsville, as an office support/secretarial employee with the human resources department, at an hourly salary of $13.44, effective June 25.
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