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Interviews set for county historian

LOCKPORT -- All of the candidates for the vacant post of county historian are to be interviewed at the next meeting of the County Legislature's Administration Committee, tentatively scheduled for March 15.

Personnel Officer Harvey N. Albond said that, contrary to previous reports, none of the candidates who took the Civil Service examination for the position last year have withdrawn their names from consideration.

"All six have been referred to Administration," he said. But only the top four appear eligible for the appointment, unless there are some last- minute dropouts.

Under Civil Service rules, the job must go to one of the top three scorers, although in this case there was a tie for third.

That would also seem to rule former historian David L. Dickinson out of contention. He tied for fifth and was removed from office by Albond after the state disregarded Dickinson's complaints about the content of the exam.

Tied for first place on the exam were Linda E. Deeks and Franklin E. Pfeil of Lockport. Tied for third were Susan A. Penfold of North Tonawanda and Carol A. Schwartz of Wheatfield. Also to be interviewed are Dickinson and Daniel E. Wickosz of Lewiston, who tied for fifth.

Administation Committee Chairman James W. Ward, R-Newfane, said a recommendation to the full Legislature for a probationary appointment of up to 26 weeks is likely to be made right after the interviews.

"I think we need to move. We've seen these people before," he said. They were interviewed last fall, but no hire was made, as the committee was still hoping a ruling to keep Dickinson in office would come from Albany.

Corrected county W-2 statements sent

LOCKPORT -- Niagara County sent out about 1,500 corrected wage statements to employees last week, but Central Data Processing Director Larry L. Helwig said the blame shouldn't go to the county's new computer software system.

The W-2 forms used in preparing in come tax returns for some 1,500 county employees were erroneous, adding before-tax pension contributions to the taxable wages of the employees.

Helwig blamed this on an operator error, not on a problem with the $1.4 million PeopleSoft software system which has been an object of controversy from some departments who claim it makes their work harder instead of easier.

"It was not a computer glitch," Helwig said. "There was a check box that wasn't checked."

The county spent about $500 mailing out letters to employees warning them their W-2 statements were wrong.

Literacy Volunteers to offer training

LOCKPORT -- Literacy Volunteers of America will offer an 18-hour training course for literacy tutors beginning with "Teaching Basic Reading," from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday in the community room of Lockport Public Library, 23 East Ave.

Interested volunteers should make a reservation for the course by calling the Literacy Volunteers office at 433-7014 or at 278-8224. Call by Thursday to guarantee a reservation in the spring sessions.

A course fee of $20 includes all class materials; however, arrangements can be made for financial assistance.

To become a tutor, volunteers must attend all six of the basic reading training sessions, which include three Saturday classes -- this week and March 17 and 31 -- and three Wednesday classes, from 6 to 9 p.m., March, 7, 21 and 28.

Prospective tutors must have a high school diploma or equivalency and be able to understand and empathize with students while building self-esteem.

Rotary Club offers scholarships

SANBORN -- The Niagara County Central Rotary Club is offering three $1,000 scholarships to residents of the Niagara-Wheatfield, Wilson and Starpoint Central school districts.

Eligible candidates must be graduating in June.

High school seniors in the three districts can get applications from their guidance counselors or by writing to: Niagara County Central Rotary, Scholarship Committee, P.O. Box 204, Sanborn, N.Y. 14132. The application deadline is April 10.

For more information, call Steve Kling, club president, at 693-1946.

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