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By John Addyman

   LYONS (OCT 6 10) – Anthony Parker, a 2005 graduate of Sodus High School and a member of the state champion basketball team then, is coming back to Wayne County as a criminal justice intern, fulfilling his academic requirements for the spring semester from SUNY Canton.
   Probation Office Director Rick Stevens told the board of supervisors’ Public Safety Committee this morning that he and Sheriff Barry Virts both had the opportunity to host Parker’s 600-hour internship, part of his Criminal Investigation degree requirement.  

Stevens said he and Virts had decided that Probation would provide the best experience for Parker, who wants to go into probation work eventually. Interns get actively involved, Stevens promised the committee.
   “We put them to work. We’ll assign him a small caseload under the watchful eye of a probation officer, and he’ll do some investigations, under the watchful eye of an investigator,” Stevens said.
   The supervisors were pleased. “We talk about the youth of the county leaving, and here’s a fine upstanding young man who wants to come back and work in the county,” said Supervisor Steve LeRoy (Sodus). “This is great.”
   Stevens also had an update on the state’s Leandra’s Law ignition interlock mandate, which requires anyone convicted of DWI with a child in the vehicle to have an interlock installed on the vehicle’s ignition, disabling the car if the driver is not sober enough to operate it. Wayne and other counties are concerned they will have to pick up the tab for the interlock devices when the convicted driver is too poor to pay for it.
   He said the administration of the new law has been a problem because judges don’t seem to be getting the paperwork filed in a timely manner, and the financial document the convicted person fills out “is not sworn to under penalty of perjury,” so the information on it is suspect, Stevens said.
   Supervisor Bob Plant (Walworth) asked for data from Stevens detailing how judges are determining income levels on those convicted where the county pays for the advice. Because Stevens indicated the financial hardship standard may not be uniformly applied, Plant suggested Stevens’ data be shared with the magistrate’s association.
   On the subject of unfunded state mandates, Plant said the upcoming budget in Walworth has taken out any training that wasn’t mandated for someone to maintain their job. “I can’t see sending people to non-required training when we’re laying people off,” he said.
   Public Defender Ron Valentine and County Administrator Jim Marquette suggested that training dollars are often well-spent, even when not required.
   “Some training may not be required, but it’s necessary to stay on top of things,” said Marquette.
   Valentine said something may not be required, “but it’s what’s necessary to produce a quality product.”
   Plant said his figures show that the newest unfunded mandates out of Albany have added a four percent tax increase in Walworth. “These unfunded mandates are killing us.”
   “What’s coming out of Albany is just short of dishonest,” said Marquette. 
   911 Tower in Sodus – The multi-year project to update and coordinate 911 services for all emergency responders in the county is nearing the end. Two transmitting towers are still in line – one in Sodus, that will be shared with the St. Lawrence Seaway Authority, and the other in Savannah, where an agreement to mount county equipment disappeared as subcontractors to subcontractors took over the work.
   E-911 Coordinator Jim Lee said the Sodus tower needs $28,000 of stabilization work and requested that the engineering firm who prepared the analysis, Fred Nudd Corp., also look at the concrete base for the tower. A generator will also need to be installed.
   Staffing Shortage – Sheriff Virts reported a staffing shortage at the jail, and pointed to 3,000 hours of Family Medical Leave Act absences this year, equivalent to 1.5 full-time employees. He also said the road patrol had rung up 249 hours of overtime in the last month just to maintain minimum staffing levels.  


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  1. Seth C. Burgess Said,

    It is always encouraging to hear of college students returning to their home to pursue a career. Its the sort of thing that should get a community excited, as this is not the normal thing anymore...

    Posted on Fri Oct 08, 12:12:00 PM EDT


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