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Sheriff Munsee’s Attempt to Hire Mark Aaron as Deputy Sheriff Shot Down by Tharan and Heasley

Wednesday, January 15, 2020 @ 12:01 AM

Posted by Ron Wilshire

mark-aaronCLARION, Pa. (EYT) – Sheriff Rex Munsee’s plans to hire former District Attorney Mark Aaron for the vacant position of Deputy Sheriff were stalled on Tuesday morning when Commissioner Wayne Brosius voted “yes” and Commissioners Ted Tharan and Ed Heasley voted “no.”

The full-time, 40-hour per week, the non-exempt position was slated to start on February 3 at $12.01 per hour.

“I think it needs some review,” said Tharan when questioned about his “no” vote.

“We had a public defender position open, and Mr. Aaron used to be a public defender, and he didn’t apply for that position.”

“I would like to discuss it with our labor counsel,” said Heasley.

Commissioners did approve District Attorney Drew Welsh to hire Eric Spessard, former public defender, to fill the vacant position of the assistant district attorney, effective January 15. The full-time, exempt, 40 hours per week position includes a salary base of $64,800.00 and $5,200.00 on-call pay.

Welsh was also approved to hire Hayley Armstrong to fill the vacant position of district attorney office manager. The full-time, exempt, 40 hours per week position is effective January 27, 2020, at a salary of $36,000.00.

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Clarion County currently has no Public Defender but can appoint attorneys as needed but expects to hire someone soon.

“It’s not a good thing to be PD-less,” said Tharan.

Children Youth Services (CYS) were also approved for a change in personnel.

First, Todd Kline’s resignation from CYS administrator in December was rescinded at the meeting. Commissioners then approved the voluntary demotion of Kline to fill the vacant position of County Casework Supervisor for Independent Living. The position is full-time, exempt, 40 hours per week, effective January 13 at a salary of $41,841.94.

Tim Cochran, Director of Employee Relations, offered some background.

“The IL position was a contracted position with Penn’s Run in DuBois, and we were looking at possibly bringing that back into the county,” said Cochran. “We created the position as civil service, and Todd took a voluntary demotion into the new position. As CYS administrator, he was not in a civil service position, so the reinstatement portion is placing it back into the civil service system. He also previously served as IL Coordinator.”

Commissioners approved a contract on behalf of GIS with Pictometry International Corp. for flyover images at a cost of $218,100.00 over three years.

“Flyover images will be used for the Assessment and GIS departments; also 9-1-1 will use it for the location of all the properties in Clarion County,” said Heasley. “The flyover was done in 2014, and the current flyover would be an actual overlay to compare the current 2020 to 2014 and show any changes and additional buildings.

“When the agreement is signed, the cost will be $114,710.00, and in three years, the second project will be a flyover for $103,389.90 and that payment will be due at that time.”

Lauren Elder, GIS Director, explained that “the photos can be laid over our existing aerial photography and a computer program can flag differences, alerting the assessment office of buildings that did not appear in the earlier map.”


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