Susquehanna County District Attorney Robert Klein discussed the addition of a School Resource Officer in the Blue Ridge School District at the Aug. 23 Salary Board meeting.
The board created the position of County Detective/School Resource Officer (SRO) in the district attorney’s office at a rate of $95 per day, not to exceed $17,670 per year.
The move came two days after the Blue Ridge Board of Education approved the position in the district.
Greg Deck, a retired criminal investigator with the Pennsylvania State Police, was tapped for the position. In addition to duties as the SRO, Deck will also be a substitute teacher in the district.
According to the memorandum of understanding with the county, the school district will reimburse the county for the cost of the position.
Klein said the addition of the SRO shows how well the county and school districts work together.
“Anytime you have a police officer in the school, incident rates drop,” Klein said. He also noted that the school board and county commissioners were fully behind the creation of the position.
Klein said the district was being proactive with the addition. Part of the SRO’s duties will be education, the district attorney said, on subjects including drugs, bullying, and suicide prevention.
In the county commissioners’ meeting, the county approved the memorandum of understanding with the Blue Ridge School District; and officially acknowledged the hiring of Deck by the DA Klein for that position.
The commissioners also exonerated the Tax Claim Bureau from collecting delinquent taxes on several parcels, including: a mobile home in Apolocon Twp. that had been removed from the property and deleted in July by the County Assessment Office; a mobile home in Bridgewater Twp. removed from the property and deleted in July by the County Assessment Office; a mobile home in Brooklyn Twp. removed from the property and deleted by Assessment; a mobile home in Hallstead removed from the property and deleted by Assessment; a mobile home in Hop Bottom removed from the property and deleted by Assessment; and a mobile home in Liberty Twp., removed from the property and deleted by Assessment.
Several purchase of service agreements between the Susquehanna County Services for Children & Youth and providers were approved.
The commissioners also signed a one-year maintenance and service agreement with KOVA Corp. for software used in the 9-1-1 department.
The adopted a proclamation declaring Sept. 10-16 as Suicide Prevention Week in Susquehanna County.
Signs were unveiled at the meeting that will be placed in the schools.
Audience member Bill Bayne said a that at a recent municipal meeting it had been reported the county is building a new communication center in Gibson Twp.
Commissioner Alan Hall said… “a lot is on the drawing table,” noting the county’s identified goal of building a new Public Safety Building.
Hall said the county is looking at funding streams, as well as working on gaining site control of a site. He did verify a site in Gibson Twp. was being looked at but nothing had been finalized.
The new courthouse entrance on Lake Avenue is now open. The Maple Street – Public Avenue doors are closed to the public.
Hall said plans for the courthouse addition and upgrades began about 10 years ago but work began on the project around 2013.
But more work on the courthouse remains, including a rebuild of the clock tower and work on the courthouse roof.
The clock tower will be rebuilt using a composite material with the original dome and clock being kept.
The county also hopes to complete several other projects by the end of the year, including some paving work.