- Published on Wednesday, 20 February 2013 00:03
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In an effort to help the Westmoreland County Sheriff’s Office deal with growing responsibilities and reduced resources, the Westmoreland Board of Supervisors Monday night approved the appointment of unpaid auxiliary deputy sheriffs.
“We have been asked to do more with a lot less,” Sheriff C.O. Balderson told the board of supervisors. “Hiring auxiliary sheriffs who can be called in when they are needed is one way to do that.”
Balderson said Westmoreland County is blessed to have a number of retired police officers, sheriff’s officers and federal law enforcement officers living in the area. “These are experienced law enforcement people who can help us when there is a need,” the sheriff said.
The proposal calls for the county to appoint up to five new auxiliary deputies who will be certified, and who will wear uniforms and carry weapons when on duty. \The board of supervisors approved the proposal unanimously after a brief public hearing. The board also restored $62,730 to the sheriff’s budget for the hiring of an additional 911 operator, filling a position that has been vacant.
Also approved was an appropriation of $170,000 requested by the Westmoreland County School Board. The funds are to be added to the 2012-2013 schools food service budget and will come from a fund balance remaining in the 2011-2012 food service budget. The board approved the appropriation by a unanimous voice vote.
Finally, the board approved a proclamation recognizing the contributions of the agricultural and forest industries to the county. The board declared March 18 through 22 as National Agriculture Week, to be observed in the county while the rest of the nation is also honoring agriculture as well.
“Agriculture provides our food and fiber, beautiful scenery and recreational opportunities and is the basis for our way of life,” the resolution stated. “Our agricultural and forestall bounty comes not only from the efforts of our farmers and landowners but by the blessings of fertile soil, beneficial rains and a moderate climate.”