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Clinton Correctional Facility to get abuse hotline

LOCK HAVEN — The Clinton County Correctional Facility will install a Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Hotline so that individuals can report sexual abuse.

The hotline is thanks to an intergovernmental agreement between the county and the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections.

This action comes at the heels of recent allegations by an ex-inmate at the county jail who claimed she was sexually assaulted and harassed by a correctional officer multiple times in 2015.

In October 2016, however, then-Deputy Warden Susan Watt and Deputy Warden Angela Hoover were praised for helping the county prison meet all requirements in an audit to ensure compliance with the PREA, even exceeding some requirements.

There are no funds involved in the agreement, except for the installation of a phone line.

“At the Clinton County prison, we are trying to do our best to prevent these kinds of things happening,” Commissioner Pete Smeltz said.

Commissioners also approved an inmate housing agreement for the county prison with Northumberland County for $70 per inmate per day.

In other business, commissioners approved an intergovernmental transfer of funds to the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services, Office of Long-Term Living, to secure increased funding for Susque-View, Inc.

The county will invest $2,434,465 in the transfer and receive $3,233,631 from the DHS. The county nets $799,156 from the transfer.

“In May the money goes out, June the money comes in,” said Chief Clerk Jann Meyers.

Since the money will be held for only three weeks, the commissioners will use a portion of the reserve fund and tax revenue to fund the transfer.

In emergency services business, the commissioners approved a one-year subscription with Onsolve, LLC for the Code Red system at the 9-1-1 Center for $4,000.

“It’s our public notification system… in times of emergencies and disasters,” said Bill Frantz, emergency management coordinator for the center.

Frantz explained the system is helpful because it puts an emergency call on a map so the caller can be located.

The contract is self-renewing.

“You know, I hate contracts like that,” said Commissioner Jeff Snyder.

Frantz and the commissioners agreed that if they do not want to renew the contract before the year is up, they can cancel it.

The commissioners also approved a subscription with Technology Enterprise, Inc. to provide access for the Department of Emergency Services to the clean network through Mobile Architecture for Communications Handling (MACH) software. The agreement is free because it is a trial subscription.

Using MACH, the DES can look at criminal records through a large database, can track the location of law enforcement when they call for assistance, provide live camera feeds, and define specific places with suspicious activity.

The commissioners decided to table the approval of a yearly agreement with Thomson Reuters to use Marshall and Swift precision cost data tables for the county assessment office because the resolution was changed at the last minute without their knowledge.

“This is something we should have talked about in a work session,” Smeltz said.

Snyder agreed.

“I just don’t like getting away from our process,” he said.

Conklin said he was comfortable approving the agreement even with the minor change.

The item has been placed on the commissioners’ Monday work session agenda.

The commissioners also approved the annual renewal of Cisco Smartnet and Datel Support for $33,040.53 with Morefield Communications.

Also Thursday, the commissioners confirmed reappointments and appointments to several county boards and authorities:

r The reappointment of Melvin Coakley and David Calhoun to the Clinton County Planning Commission for four-year terms, expiring Dec. 31, 2021.

r The reappointment of Ronald Welch (representing Castanea Township) and Dave Grimm (representing Flemington Borough) to the Clinton County Sewer Authority for three-year terms, expiring Dec. 31, 2020.

r The reappointment of Martha Sykes and Michael Bruning to the Ross Library Board of Trustees for three-year terms, expiring Jan. 1, 2021. There is one vacancy on the board.

r The reappointment of Bob Rolley, Tim Horner, Carol Hanna and Richard Morris to the Clinton County Revolving Loan Fund Board for one-year terms, expiring Dec. 31, 2018.

r The appointment of Amanda Keiffer to the Clinton County Revolving Loan Fund Board, replacing Wade Keiffer, for a one-year term, expiring Dec. 31, 2018.

The commissioners approved the resignation of Nancy Dunkle, part-time clerk typist/receptionist in the district attorney’s office.

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