MILFORD - Two persons were approved for hire by the Pike County Commissioners, September 6, through the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR).

Commissioner Chairman Matthew Osterberg said this was a new program to match individuals needing work with jobs in the county that need to be done.

Arielle Riley was hired as a part time OVR Clerk for the Prothonotary’s Office, effective September 5. Thomas DeAngelo was hired as a part time OVR Clerk to serve in the Commissioner’s Office. DeAngelo’s position is effective, September 11. Both are newly created positions.

Salaries were set at $10.00 an hour, the standard starting county wage.

He said there may be other OVR positions created as well in the Transportation office and Board of Elections, where staffing is needed. Commissioners met with the Office of OVR last year about this.

Training dollars are provided by OVR, and the County is doing the training in-house. The salaries are also funded through OVR during the training period, but eventually the County will take it over, Osterberg said.
The program prepares people with disabilities to be able to enter the workforce and matches them with jobs.
“These jobs are make-work welfare type jobs,” Commissioner Richard Caridi said. “There is an actual need to do this work, whatever the job description is. That was transmitted to OVR, and OVR looked at it, and matched the skill sets and had people capable of performing those jobs. It’s not like we are giving away a job to somebody. Somebody is earning that job. That’s the nice part of it.”

The County is undertaking the program on a trial basis to see how well it works.

The Office of Vocational Rehabilitation is operated through the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Pike County, as well as Wayne County, falls under the District Office in Wilkes-Barre. An OVR counselor is available in each county in the state. Pike County Workforce Development partners with OVR.

Also discussed:

A $50,000 donation was made to Habitat for Humanity of Pike County. The County makes the donation twice a year with funds raised through the fees collected by the Register & Recorder Office. Michael Donovan, who accepted the check for Habitat, stated that 2017 has been their busiest year, working on two houses. House #26 is under construction. They have also built four handicapped-accessible ramps this year.

(See the Sept. 16th edition for more meeting items.)
Pike County Commissioners meet on the first and third Wednesday at 9 a.m. at the Administration Building, 506 Broad St., Milford, PA.