Coop. Extension gives back what it doesn’t need

BROOKVILLE — For the second time in three years, the Jefferson County branch of the Penn State Cooperative Extension returned funds to the Jefferson County Commission.

Tuesday, the commissioners were presented with a check from Rick Kralj, director of the county cooperative extension, and Louise Christofor, extension board member.

The check, in the amount of $3,000, was the remainder of the county contribution to the cooperative extension in Jefferson County. The extension assists with youth and adult agricultural and lifestyle education and is a leading organizing agency for area 4-H participants.

“We managed a surplus through prudent use of funds,” Christofor said. “Thank you for supporting us, and we are happy to give a portion of those funds back.”

Commission Chairman Paul Corbin thanked Christofor and Kralj for their efforts and credited the board members for developing an accurate budget.

“We’ve worked very closely with them over the past seven years,” he said. “When we first came on, things were not going as smoothly as they are now between the county and the extension. We’ve worked well together. We asked them to submit a realistic budget, and they have done that.”

In other business:

• The commissioners accepted a tax anticipation note (TAN) in the amount of $2,500,000. Treasurer James VanSteenberg said the value of the TAN is comparable to other years.

The money is used to pay invoices during the period before state funding is supplied and local taxing revenues are experienced.

VanSteenberg reported that the county will draw money out on only an as-needed basis, and it is likely that no interest charges will be accrued on about $1 million of the TAN funds.

In years past, the county has withdrawn the entire TAN amount and invested money that was not immediately needed into certificate of deposits (CDs), and thereby offset interest charges on the short-term loan.

This year, however, only low-return CDs are available, and the county would not be able to recoup its interest costs through further investment. Therefore, VanSteenberg and the commissioners have elected to not withdraw TAN funds unless needed.

• The commissioners approved the re-appointment of Claire Orner to the Jefferson County Solid Waste Authority for a five-year term.

• The commissioners approved two projects for the Jefferson County Hotel Tax Committee: $2,000 for marketing of the Jefferson County Historical Society and $1,890 for advertising of the Punxsutawney Area Chamber of Commerce.

• The commissioners entered into a contract with John Meterko, of DeLancey, to provide cleaning services to District Judge Douglas Chambers’ office in the amount of $185 per month. The contract will run Jan. 1, 2011, through Dec. 31, 2011.

Similarly, the commissioners entered into a contract with Patricia Johnston, of Reynoldsville, to provide cleaning services to District Judge David Inzana’s office in the amount of $185 per month. The contract will run Jan. 1, 2011, through Dec. 31, 2011.

• The commissioners entered into a posting and personal service agreement with Constable Marsha Johnstone, of Brookville, for posting and personal service to resident owners for upset tax claim sales and/or private sales. Johnstone will be reimbursed $10 per parcel posting.

• The commissioners entered into a legal services contract with John M. Ingros to discharge the duties of chief public defender in and for Jefferson County. The contract is effective from Jan. 1, 2011, through Dec. 31, 2013, and Ingros will be compensated at a yearly rate of $84,300.