Scheetz Resigns As Delaware Township Supervisor; Neufeld Named Interim
Pike County Dispatch – Thursday, August 3, 2017
By Wayne Witkowski
DINGMANS FERRY – Jane Neufeld was seated on the Delaware Township Board of Supervisors six months earlier than expected during its bi-monthly meeting on July 26.
The township auditor and a regular at the supervisor meetings, Neufeld was approved in a vote by township supervisors John Henderson and Ron Hough as an interim replacement for the rest of this year for Jeffrey Scheetz, who resigned as supervisors and treasurer on the board a day earlier. Scheetz, who had served as chairman of the board, said he and his wife were relocating to New Jersey to join his children and grandchildren who live there. His term expires at the end of 2019.
Henderson then was named board chairman and Hough was named to the vice chairman post, which had been held by Henderson. Ironically, Henderson had the shortest term of service on the board at the start of this year.
Neufeld also was approved by Henderson and Hough as Treasurer.
Scheetz is the second supervisor in the township to resign this year.
Tom Ryan stepped down as supervisor in January to devote more time to his retirement from the contracting industry and to spend more time at his other residence in Florida. Hough had been named interim supervisor for that position for the rest of the year.
Neufeld in May had defeated Hough in the Republican primary for the seat vacated by Ryan in the Primary Election. There was no opposing candidate on the Democratic slate for the May election, so Neufeld was running unopposed in the November General Election.
Last week, she was named interim Supervisor for the seat held by Scheetz until January when she begins her full six-year term.
“To have a chance to get a let up in learning with the other two supervisors and employees and learning this part of local government service to our residents is fantastic,” Neufeld said.
To take the interim position, Neufeld resigned as township auditor she had been holding before she was sworn in as supervisor.
Resident Steve McBride endorsed the selection of Neufeld during the township workshop prior to the regular meeting, pointing out that she not only would gain experience but also be able to give input on the town budget with her experience as auditor, although township Solicitor Thomas Farley said Neufeld still could recommend revisions after beginning her full term in January.
The Pike County Republican and Democratic committees will seek candidates to run in the November General Election for the remaining two years of Scheetz’s term, starting in January. Those candidates will be named in early September. Th committees also have to select candidates for auditor for the General Election.
“I never saw this before with this timing,” said Farley, referring to a resignation coming after a primary election that leaves it up to the county’s committees to select a candidate.
Hough may get another shot at a full-term supervisor seat if selected by the Republican party, but said afterward he is open to the possibility and would just wait and see what would happen.
In his letter of resignation to township Administrator Krista Predmore, Scheetz said. “I apologize for the suddenness of this announcement, but, as many residents of the township know, my wife and I have been considering moving back to New Jersey in order to live closer to our children and grandchildren.”
“It has been my honor to serve the good people of Delaware Township and to help supervise its many outstanding employees. Please convey my best wishes to them and my sincere gratitude for all their hard work on behalf of the township.”
“Lastly, I would like to recognize the current and past supervisors I have serve with. It has been my honor to help them represent our citizens . I would also like to thank our solicitor, Tom Farley, for his sage advice and friendship, which has made my job as chair of the BOS so meaningful and pleasant. I would like to especially recognize you, Krista, for your professionalism, patience and accessibility.”
Henderson praised Scheetz during the public comment period at the end of the meeting, saying, “Although we occasionally disagreed, he was a gentleman. I held him in high esteem with his integrity. It was good working with him.”
Henderson said the resignation was no surprise. “Everyone knew it was coming for a couple of weeks,” he said.
“I knew it was a matter of time,” said Len Glamann, head of the township Planning Commission who said it looked like Scheetz might have closed on a sale of his house two months ago before it was finally completed this week.
Changes already are under way with the turnover on the board. Henderson made a motion that was unanimously approved to change the starting times of the supervisors’ workshop before the meeting to 6pm and the time of the regular meeting to 7pm.
He said moving the starting times a half house later would give more residents an opportunity to attend the meetings.
Also at the meeting, the board approved adopting the Akenac Park Recreation and Kitchen Rental Policy with full kitchen use at rate of $400 for five hours and $80 per additional hour and would include mandatory online training for kitchen and food safety. The board also approved the online training package of $248 annually for usage of both Akenac Park and the township building kitchens.
Also approved by the board was a stringent township donation policy and application to nonprofit organizations and individuals who must show that the work directly impacts township residents along with following other guidelines. Three years of tax returns also must be provided in the request.
The board approved the $139,700.90 contract bid of JPA Masonry for the new salt shed project at 145 Wilson Hill Road to be completed by Sept. 29. Township employee Ed Hammond asked how it would be funded and Predmore said there was a $100,000 line item for the project in the current budget and the rest would come from the general fund or capital reserve.
The board also approved renewal of its annual contract with Portland Contractors Inc. for August 1, 2017 through July 31, 2018 as the township’s Certified Water Operator at a rate of $400 per month. The board pointed out it was the least expensive firm that meets the qualifications.
Mike Kolenet, Mike Moffa, and Hammond were approved by the board to attend a free LTAP Chainsaw Safety Training and Demo 8am to 3pm on Thursday at Chestnuthill Township in Broadheadsville. Glamann asked if it would reduce township insurance costs and Predmore expressed doubt but said she would look into it.
The board approved a budget workshop 7-9pm on Wednesday, August 2.