Environmental Education Pollinator Garden Coming to Two Mile Run Park in Venango County

| January 11, 2017

Two Mile Run ParkFRANKLIN, Pa. (EYT) – An Environmental Education Pollinator Garden is coming to Two Mile Run County Park in Venango County.

The county commissioners approved a Greenway Block Grant Contract for the garden at their monthly meeting Tuesday.

According to Jason Ruggiero, executive director of the Venango County Regional Planning Commission, the grant is from the Northwest Commission in the amount of $5,390. It is a reimbursement grant with in-kind matches only.

A pollinator garden is generally made up of native wildflowers and grasses that allow native pollinator – namely bees – to have a support system.

Also at the meeting, the commissioners approved a $13,150 budget transfer to the Human Resources Department for software that will allow the department to automate some services including open enrollment according to Human Resources Director Jillian Stephens, who says some services are still being done by hand.

In other general action:

  • Approved a 5-year agreement with Securus Technologies Services for an inmate phone system and software to track inmates at the country prison. There is no extra cost to the county, and the county will make 82.5 percent commission on it.
  • Agreed to administer the Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) for Cranberry Township and Sugarcreek Borough.
  • Set the tax rate for 2017 at six mills as agreed upon in the 2017 budget voted on in December
  • Authorized placing Emily Donaldson in the PennDot dotGrants system
  • Appointed Erik Johnson as CDBG Program Labor Standards Officer
  • Officially recognized the week of Jan. 22-28 as Venango County School Choice Week
  • Ratified an Eagle Scout Recognition Proclamation for William W. W. Thompson. Commissioner Vincent Witherup, an Eagle Scout himself, noted how prestigious an honor this is with only 2 percent of Boy Scouts countrywide earning the rank of Eagle Scout.
  • Ratified a contract with Time Warner Cable for the former Venango Manor so that the fire alarm system can be installed
  • Ratified a contract with Liokareas Construction Company for the repair and replacement of the roof at the Courthouse Annex. The work is already completed

    It was announced at the Election Board meeting prior to the commissioners meeting that petitions for the May 16 primary election for both local and statewide positions would be available at the commissioner’s’ office starting Feb. 14, 2017, and that petitions must be turned in by March 7, 2017. There are several statewide judges positions on the ballot as well as country position for District Attorney, Sheriff, Register and Recorder, Coroner, Judge of Elections and Inspector of Elections. A number of local city, borough and township positions are also up for election.


    It was announced that free boating safety course through the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission would be held at Two Mile Run Park March 21-22. While the course is free, if residents want to receive the certificate that goes along with the course, there is a $10 charge.

    It was also announced that people wanting to use the pavilion at the park this spring and summer should get their reservations in as soon as possible as the pavilion is starting to fill up quickly.


    The commissioners approved the following Human Service action:

  • The contract with Barbara Feroz, Ph.D. to provide training sessions to Human Services staff at the rate of $50 per hour inclusive of all costs.
  • Continued to contract with Svetz Consulting Services, LLC to provide training sessions to Human Services staff at the maximum rate of $625 per training session inclusive of all costs.
  • Continued to contract with Active Aging in the fiscal year 2016-17 to provide ombudsman services with respect to the following Sugar Valley Lodge facilities: Hickory, Polk, Silver Oak, and Whispering Pines. The Provider will be reimbursed the rate of $45 per hour inclusive of transportation.
  • Entered into three Resource Family Agreements for the Foster/Kinship Care Program through County and Youth services (CYS)
  • Entered into an agreement with Lawrence County Social Services to perform home inspections with the mission of eliminating and preventing sickness and disease by reducing health hazards within Pennsylvania homes through the Safe and Healthy Homes Grant through the Department of Health. The County will be compensated $150 for each referral and $650 for the completion of the assessment and follow-up plan.
  • Appointed Lisa Weisman to a fourth 3-year term on the Venango County Older Adult Advisory Board effective Jan. 1, 2017.
  • Entered into a Medicaid Waiver Operating Agreement with the Office of Child Development and Early Learning, Pennsylvania Department of Human Services for the County’s Early Intervention Program effective July 1, 2016.Appointed Dustin Zitterbart and Angie Proper to the Human Services System of Care Advisory Board effective Feb. 1, 2017.

    The following Human Resources actions were approved by the commissioners:

  • Hired Randi Reed and Stephen Strickenbarger as a corrections officers (probationary new hire) at a full-time rate on AFSCME Pay Grade 11 effective Jan. 5, 2017 for Reed and Jan. 2 fro Strickenbarger. They are both filling existing vacancies and the hiring of Reed needs to be ratified at the February Prison Board meeting and the hiring of Strickenbarger was ratified at the January Prison Board meeting.
  • Reinstated Kevin Roess as a Correction Officer at the AFSCME Pay Grade 11 effective Dec. 29, 2016. The action was ratified at the January Prison Board meeting.
  • Reinstated with “out of class compensation” of Sabrah McHenry in Children & Youth services from Non-Exempt Hourly Pay Grade 5 ($12.40 per hour) to Non-Exempt Hourly Hourly Pay Grade 5 ($13.96 per hour) effective Dec. 19, 2016, ay Grade 5 ($13.96/hr.) filling an existing vacancy; out of class to continue through Jan. 30, 2017, assignment to last up to one yea.r
  • Promoted in Human Service Fiscal Cara Rowland from Fiscal Assistant Pay Grade 8 to Fiscal Technician Pay Grade 10 effective Jan. 2, 2017. Promoted in CYS Katelynn Madden from service Coordinator I, Probationary Full Time at Non-Exempt Hourly Pay Grade 5 to Service Coordinator II, Probationary Full Time, Non-Exempt Hourly Pay Grade 6 effective Jan. 1, 2017. Promoted in CYS Anna Shawgo from Service Coordinator I, Probationary Full Time, Non-Exempt Hourly Pay Grade 5 to Service Coordinator II, Probationary Full Time, Non-Exempt Hourly Pay Grade 6 effective Dec. 19, 2016.
  • Voluntarily transferred Elizabeth Williams from PIC Unit Service Coordinator III, Full Time, Non-Exempt Hourly Pay Grade 7 to CYS Service Coordinator II, Full Time, Non-Exempt Hourly Pay Grade 6 effective Jan. 9, 2017.
  • Ended the probation periods for Melvin Britton in Maintenance effective July 26, 2016, Robert Christy in Maintenance effective Dec. 9, 2016, William Berry, Correction Officer effective Dec. 24, 2016, Jamie Carson Telecommunicator I effective Jan. 17, 2016, Gregory Depew Telecommunicator I effective Jan. 3, 2017, and Leanne Goreczny Telecommunicator I effective Jan. 3, 2017.
  • Announced the following separation of employment – retirement: Alan Roemer Custodial Worker III effective Dec. 30, 2016 (separation due to the furlough of position) and Vicki Babb, Department Clerk III in Agriculture Extension effective Dec. 30, 2016.
  • Announced the following separation of employment: Danny Norris, Maintenance Worker III, SEIU Position, effective Dec. 16, 2016; Luke Curik, Corrections Officer, effective Dec. 24, 2016; Jim Misel, Corrections Officer, effective Dec. 19, 2016; Kevin Roess, Corrections Officer, effective Dec. 26, 2016; Stacey Page, Telecommunicator I, effective Dec. 22, 2016; and Hope Taneyhill, Service Coordinator II in CYS effective Dec. 27, 2016.
  • Hired Susan Hoover, Administrative Assistant II, Part Time, Non-Exempt Hourly Pay Grade 5 in the Public Defender’s office effective Jan. 4, 2017, to fill a newly created position; hired Kenneth Barker, Maintenance Worker II,, Full Time, SEIU Pay Grade 8 at the airport effective Jan. 3, 2017, to fill a newly created position
  • Reallocated in Human Service Fiscal Rachael McCall from Department Clerk III, Full Time, SEIU Pay Grade 8 to Fiscal Technician Full Time SEIU Pay Grade 10 effective Dec. 18, 2016.

    In the public comment period at the end of the meeting, Cranberry Township Resident Aaron Bolinger asked the commissioners for help in researching what it would take to change the Cranberry Township Government.

    Bolinger said he wasn’t at the meeting to “abolish” the Cranberry Township government but wanted to do something between “alter” and/or “reform” aspects of it.

    “Quite frankly, we are fed up with Cranberry Township Supervisors,” Bolinger said in a prepared statement. “And even more specifically their underlings – employees and volunteer committees – imposing and attempting to impose even greater oppression upon our peaceful people in the name of generating revenue.”

    Bolinger said he was looking to the commissioners to give him advice on what the specific petition language and other requirements would be and to whom to present a petition to for one of the following actions: (a) to create a new township (something he said he doesn’t think has happened since 1933 in the Pennsylvania. (b) Divorce his area of Cranberry Township from the township and annex with Rockland Township (c)Form a minor borough form of government or (d) reform the elected supervisors to be elected from geographical areas within the township instead of from the township as a whole.

    The commissioners thanked Bolinger for his time but otherwise had no comment, and no one else was at the meeting to speak on behalf of Bolinger.

    The next commissioners meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Feb. 14.

    Copyright © 2018 EYT Media Group, Inc. All rights reserved. Any copying, redistribution or retransmission of the contents of this service without the express written consent of EYT Media Group, Inc. is expressly prohibited.

    Category: Local News, News, Sports, Uncategorized