Council honors longtime police dispatcher for 25 years of service

PUNXSUTAWNEY — Punxsutawney Borough Council recognized Joe Steiner, Punxsutawney Borough Police warden/dispatcher for his 25 years of service at last Monday's meeting.

"I want to thank you for your 25 years of service to Punxsutawney Borough Police and proclaim May 14 as Joe Steiner Day in Punxsutawney," said Jim Wehrle, Punxsutawney Mayor.

"We often hear about the wonderful job the police officers and firefighters have done, but you rarely hear about the great work done by our dispatchers," Police Chief Tom Fedigan said. "Dispatchers are truly the first first responders. They are the first and most critical contact that our citizens have in emergency situations."

Fedigan said the dispatchers serve local citizens daily in countless ways.

The work of these unseen first responders is invaluable in emergency situations, and they all deserve heartfelt appreciation, he said.
"They are highly-trained professional employees who are vital to the safety and well being of the residents of Punxsutawney," the chief said.
Steiner retired with the rank of Major from the U.S. Air Force after serving his country for 20 years.

"He continues to serve his community with more than 25 years of service as an emergency dispatcher," Fedigan said. “Joe exemplifies all the characteristics of a dedicated and hardworking employee. He should be commended for his years of service."

Fedigan thanked Steiner on behalf of the Punxsutawney Borough Police Department, members of borough council and the citizens of Punxsutawney.
Steiner, who works the overnight shift, thanked everyone, especially the borough police officers, Chief Fedigan and borough council for all their support.

Also, at last Monday's meeting, council:
• Approved the request from the American Legion to hold the Memorial Day parade at 10:30 a.m. May 28.

Raymond Depp of the American Legion said the parade will begin half-an-hour later to allow more people to attend.

Depp said anyone who would like to participate in the parade should call him at (814) 938-8583.

• Approved a request from Mary Ann Kernich to hold Music in the Park in Barclay Square again.

Kernich said the free concert series will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday beginning July 12 through August 23.

• Approved a request from Punxsutawney Revitalization: Investing, Developing, Enhancing (PRIDE) to hold the Farmer's Market on South Findley Street from 4 to 7 p.m. beginning July 19 through September or October, depending on the weather.

• Approved a request from Punxsy Phil Fighters to hold its annual 5K run/1 mile walk from 11 a.m. to noon Saturday, June 2 on the Mahoning Shadow Trail and Elk and Lever Streets.

• Approved the list of candidates submitted by Save Punxsutawney's Local Area Swimming Holes (SPLASH) to work at the George C. Brown Community Pool this summer.

• Approved a request from ATA to remove one parking space on North Findley Street in front of its new terminal building in order to accommodate bus traffic.

• Approved a motion to hire Dylan Blose as a part-time police officer.
• Approved a request from the Eagle Riders motorcycle club to hold its rally Saturday, July 7, the final day of the Groundhog Festival.

• Approved a motion to change the ordinance to allow parking on the northwest side of Fairman Lane.

• Approved a motion to allow Joe Defelice, Public Works supervisor, to bid on a used PennDOT truck at a price not to exceed $15,000 at an auction to be held at the PennDOT garage in Fairview.