Hiring of paramedic focus of Mingo council

MINGO JUNCTION – The hiring of a paramedic for the village fire station was discussed during Tuesday’s Village Council meeting.

Fire Chief John Wright told asked council for its permission to advertise to hire for another paramedic for the department. Wright said there were no responses to the first advertisement and another paramedic for the department is essential.

“I can only do so much with the budget I have,” said Wright, adding in the last two weeks he’s worked more than 150 hours.

Wright also said a paramedic has been on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week for years, and he only has one-fifth of the manpower he’s had in the past.

Council discussed whether the village could afford to advertise for another paramedic, with John Angelica, village clerk, noting the line item in the village budget for advertising this year already is in the red.

“We can only do what our finances allow us to do,” said John Fabian, acting council president. “We have to sit down as a whole and work out what we want for a fire department.”

Fabian added he personally knew residents who had moved to Mingo Junction because of the safety forces. Several councilmen indicated they wanted to see paramedic service continue as it has in the past.

“We’ll give this some thought and put this on the agenda during the (next finance meeting, scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in council chambers).”

In other matters:

Several residents approached council with complaints about dust, dirt and rocks at the entrance of the FEX Co. on Commercial Avenue. Some councilmen indicated the company isn’t living up to an agreement to keep the entrance and surrounding area free from rocks and debris. Councilman John Bracone agreed with the residents.

“(The company) isn’t doing anything they agreed to do,” he said.

Fabian referred the matter to Steve Maguschak, acting village administrator and village police chief.

Maguschak told council repairs to the village building’s roof are nearly complete, adding there was a $6,000 overrun in costs for the project. Maguschak also said he is in the process of selecting a new police officer, with eight to nine possible candidates for the position.

Council discussed forming a social media policy for village employees.

Fabian led council and the audience in a round of applause for village resident Tom Fitzgerald, who was recently named a Herald-Star, The Weirton Daily Times Community Star, Presented by Weirton Medical Center. Fabian also thanked volunteers who recently painted curbs on village streets and sidewalks for a Make a Difference Day project.

Council voted to give seniors involved in the village beautification committee free pool passes for next summer as a thank-you for their efforts.

There will be a meeting of the water committee at 9:15 a.m. Monday in council chambers.