Last updated: September 08. 2013 10:29PM - 3282 Views
By - jandes@civitasmedia.com

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Luzerne County Manager Robert Lawton has publicly issued a request for proposals seeking a professional recruiter to find applicants for the three remaining division head positions overseeing budget and finance, human services and operational services.

Interested recruiters must submit proposals by Sept. 24.

According to the request, the chosen search firm must work with the county to develop desired qualifications, necessary experience and recommended compensation for the three positions and then provide a list of qualified candidates to the county within 45 days.

The proposal projects the firm will be seeking applicants between Oct. 11 and Nov. 15, which means a new budget and finance division head would not be hired before the upcoming 2014 budget process. Senior accountant Brian Swetz has been serving as interim budget/finance head since June.

• A newly created election office deputy director position paying $35,000 has been posted on the career opportunities section of the county website, www.luzernecounty.org.

• County Controller Walter Mitchell is examining how money is withdrawn from the sheriff’s office prisoner transport fund in light of a former employee’s recent removal of $375 from the fund.

The fund is supposed to cover tolls, gas and other miscellaneous expenses. Mitchell said he wants to determine if additional checks and balances are warranted to prevent theft.

Don Lasoski resigned as sheriff lieutenant after acknowledging he took the cash for a personal issue with plans to repay it before anyone noticed. Another worker performing a routine check detected and reported the missing money.

• Council will meet at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the council meeting room at the courthouse.

• The agenda includes a vote by council to initiate litigation against D.A. Nolt Inc., seeking compensation for water damage to the courthouse interior in September 2011. The Berlin, N.J.-based contractor handled waterproofing of the courthouse domes, which involved stripping worn coating off the domes’ terra cotta tiles and applying a new protective coating. The water damage occurred while the tiles were stripped.

• The administration will update council Tuesday on banking consolidation plans. Home rule called for a reduction in the county’s 70 to 100 bank accounts, and the administration sought proposals seeking one banking institution.

• Final approval of an ordinance calling for a minimum 37.5-hour county work week also is on Tuesday’s agenda. The switch to more hours must be negotiated into union contracts as they expire. Lawton has said he will reduce staff to compensate for the increased cost paying some employees to work more hours.

• Councilman Harry Haas’ proposal to hold a security summit on crime also will be discussed Tuesday. Haas cancelled a summit he had scheduled last week after some council members said he didn’t obtain authorization from council to hold the event.

• The latest property assessments have been loaded into The Times Leader’s free online database. The searchable database may be accessed using the “tax assess” icon near in the “most popular” box at www.timesleader.com.

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