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Lyco commisioners announce hiring for top public safety post

By MIKE REUTHER

From the Sun Gazette

WILLIAMSPORT — A key spot in Lycoming County government will soon be filled with the hiring of Jeff Hutchins, of Montoursville, as director of the Department of Public Safety.

Commissioners announced at their meeting Thursday that Hutchins, an EMT, volunteer firefighter and part-time telecommunicator, is being selected for the job after an extensive search.

Hutchins is to replace John Yingling, who retired from the position in December after 30 years in the department.

Yingling was approved to serve part-time in the department at $35 per hour.

Commissioner Rick Mirabito explained that Yingling, who will not work more than 500 hours this year, is being hired to help with the transition process.

In other personnel matters, commissioners approved John E. Lavelle as deputy director of planning and community development at a salary of $69,246. The hiring fills a vacancy left with the retirement of Fran McJunkin.

Commissioners approved the following personnel to fill other positions:

— Alexandra D. Sholley, law clerk for Judge Ryan Tira, $50,548 per year.

— Joshua R. Hewlett, Department of Public Safety, telecommunications, $16.95 per hour.

— Andrew Miller, Resource Management Services, equipment operator, $18.49.

— Heather L. George, Planning and Community Development, clerk, $15.22 per hour.

— Eric S. Maneval, Resource Management Services, material recovery facility maintenance specialist, $18.08 per hour.

Commissioners approved the elimination of a part-time clerk in the voter services office.

In other matters, commissioners approved a flood mitigation assistance grant agreement, 2-1.

The agreement allows for the government buyout of a single flood-prone property along Warrensville Road in Loyalsock Township.

Commissioner Tony Mussare, who voted against the agreement, noted that it results in the removal of a property from the county tax rolls.

“That’s the frustrating part of this,” he said.

Commissioners voted in favor of a $3,000 grant and monitoring agreement with Lycoming Police Camp Cadet Foundation Inc.

Camp Cadet introduces youths to law enforcement and character building attributes such as discipline, self-esteem, teamwork, and violence prevention.

Todd Lauer, of Jersey Shore, said he was against Camp Cadet, likening it to a Hitler-like indoctrination program of violence and control.

Commissioners defended Camp Cadet.

Commissioner Scott Metzger called it “an outstanding program.”

Mirabito said such programs can make a difference in the lives of youths and invited Lauer to visit the camp.

Also at the meeting, commissioners approved:

— A grant and monitoring agreement of $30,000 with the Law Enforcement & Police Training Association.

— An agreement with The Roberts Co. for temporary employee staffing.

— Purchase of server hardware for Resources Management Services at $14,229.

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