Luzerne County has received six applications for manager job to date

By Jennifer Learn-Andes - | March 3rd, 2016 6:29 pm

By Jennifer Learn-Andes

Luzerne County received six applications for the top manager position by Thursday afternoon, with one day remaining to apply.

Acting county Manager C. David Pedri said he mailed his application packet Thursday.

“I have many goals I want to see through and look forward to the opportunity to discuss those goals with the search committee,” said Pedri.

The Butler Township attorney was appointed acting manager at the start of the year following Robert Lawton’s resignation, which took effect the end of 2015.

Pedri was appointed as chief county solicitor in April 2013 and had previously worked as an assistant district attorney and deputy district attorney in the county for seven years.

The citizen manager search committee will meet at 6 p.m. Friday to discuss interview questions and finalize a plan to uniformly rate the applicants, said committee Chairman Michael Giamber.

The committee will start rating and ranking the redacted applications on March 9 to ensure all mailed applications have been received, Giamber said.

Citizens last week urged the committee to consider re-advertising the position if committee members concluded they did not receive a sufficient number of applicants.

Giamber said the group has widely advertised the position locally and nationally, including notices through a myriad of online job sites and the International City/County Management Association and County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania.

Giamber this week pointed to posting on the LinkedIn job website that showed more than 230 people had viewed the county’s manager job announcement.

The county received 72 applications when the position was last advertised in 2011.

Observers have attributed the reduction in applications to the county’s continued financial struggles, a possible future change in home rule that could impact the manager position, additional requirements for applicants to provide narratives illustrating their experience, the position’s unusually broad advertised salary range, a proposed manager county residency requirement and the manager’s potential challenges dealing with a sometimes contentious county council.

Required by home rule, the committee must recommend three manager finalists to the council, which makes the final hiring selection.

Committee member Gerard O’Donnell has said he won’t support forwarding three finalists if he doesn’t “truly believe” all three would excel in the position.

Carmen Ambrosino, Christopher Slusser and Gene A. Camoni also serve on the committee.

Reach Jennifer Learn-Andes at 570-991-6388 or on Twitter @TLJenLearnAndes.