Monday, December 23, 2013

Festivus - Airing of the Grievances Shamokin Style

"I couldn't get up the steps. They were a ball of fire," said Shamokin Police Chief Edward Griffiths.

Patrolman Nate Rhodes climbed to the second story at the rear of the home. He tried to enter a window but flames shot out when it was opened.

The above two paragraphs were taken from the News-Item's report about the fire that took the life of Missy Pangburn on December 10th.  Also, but not appearing in this blog is the picture of Shamokin police officer Jarrod Scandle also volunteering his time as a firefighter battling flames from the second story roof.

This past Friday, Shamokin City government decided to balance their 2014 budget on the backs of public safety with four full time officers being projected to be furloughed along with two special officers.  The budget shortfall is in the neighborhood of $800,000. Their fate may be decided tonight at a meeting of city council.

There are a few questions that need to be asked and answered:

  1. Where did the shortfall in revenue fall from 2012?
  2. How much did the Northumberland County cost the city with constable duties?
  3. What was the increase in health benefits premiums.  If companies were changed from a year prior, why the change?
  4. Was the problem a conflict of personalities with the council and chief clerk with checks and balances?  Was it plain malfeasance??? 
With 6501 calls to 911 and only 7300 citizens, safety is of the utmost service needed.