LOCK HAVEN - The plans were tweaked again as the county commissioners continue working on a project to provide a new handicapped ramp at the Clinton County Courthouse.
Commissioner Jeff Snyder said another look at the design was included with updated concerns for handicapped access to courthouse restrooms, and the two concepts were combined to create what the commissioners hope is the final visit to the drawing board.
Snyder emphasized the revisit wasn't a matter of correcting a mistake, but of adapting and changing aspects to better serve the county's citizens.
Design schematics or concept drawings were not immediately available, but this newer concept removes the women's facilities at the Jay Street-Water Street corner of the courthouse, and moves those to the present men's room just across the corridor.
Those facilities would be upgraded and expanded to allow for larger access and handicapped access.
In the meantime, a men's room near the assessment office would be upgraded and redesigned for handicapped access.
Snyder said the hope is the newer facilities will be able to accommodate public visits during peak times, like days when jury selection occurs or when a trial is being held.
In a brief, related aside, Snyder noted it's not his habit to offer criticisms of prior boards, and he apologized for doing so at a recent meeting of the board. He said it was more important to look at future improvements than to focus on recriminations, and he said he would try to do better in the future.
The design has been frequently revised in the past year, due to the raising of security concerns, and more recently, when the city's Historical Review Board examined those plans and noted they created an unbalanced symmetry of the building front. In the distant past, an elevator was considered an option, but that was also rejected because of the expense and security concerns.
Currently, handicapped access is on the Jay Street side of the courthouse, and is deteriorating. Using it also requires security personnel to be alerted to the presence of a person wanting entrance, and opening the electronically-controlled door.
In other business:
- The board approved a minor revision of the subcontract with Penn State University to implement an early childhood learning project.
- The board confirmed the transfer of Connie Eck from laundry supervisor to corrections officer at the Clinton County Correctional Facility at a salary of $31,853, the same salary she earned as a supervisor. Supervisor Pete Smeltz said no change was made to wages because the transfer was due to an administrative decision.
- The board established the salary of Jane Bogert, corrections officer, at $28,891, correcting last week's miscalculation that set the salary at $28,439.
- The board approved payment of bills in the amount of $346,752.
- Local resident Richard Morris again pushed for the reestablishing of an assistant assessor position. The board said no decision has been made about the position as yet.
- Some 25 individuals have applied for the maintenance supervisor position, and interviews will follow in short order, Snyder said. He added the board has included a test for new hires because the commissioners want to hire "on the basis of what you know and not who you know."