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400 Properties Headed for Sheriff's Sale in Wyoming County

Tax Claim Director Jill Baldo says that about 400 properties whose taxes have been delinquent for two years or more will be up for Sheriff's Sale in November. On Tuesday, Baldo and Sheriff Richard Montross discussed with the commissioners the best and most efficient way of carrying out the due process associated with the Sheriff's Sale.

If the properties are owner occupied, the signature of an adult living at the property must be obtained to acknowledge notification. If the properties are not owner occupied, the property must merely be posted. Some counties hire independent contractors to make the notification and postings. Others use State Constables. Still others use Sheriff's Deputies and members of the Tax Claim Office.

After considerable discussion about safety issues, as well as issues of efficient procedure and liability insurance topics, it was decided that Sheriff's Deputies will make the notifications and postings. They will be accompanied by staff from the Tax Claim Office because those persons are most familiar with the location of the parcels in question and can most easily direct the notifying Deputy to them.

Some concern was raised because of what took place several months ago in Bradford County, where two deputies were killed when they approached a residence to post a Sheriff's Sale notice.

Liability and worker's compensation insurance issues were raised when the possibility of using independent contractors was suggested. Because it is essentially county business, the present solution was decided upon.

In other business, more Liquid Fuels money was disbursed to requesting municipalities. A mutual agreement was approved among Wyoming County and Lackawanna, Bradford and Sullivan Counties. The agreement states that emergency facilities will be shared in the event that one county's facility becomes unusable for any reason. A similar agreement already exists between Wyoming and Susquehanna Counties.

The negotiations between the county and the union representing the prison employees will begin in October. The SEIU represents 17 full-time guards, two full-time and one part-time cook at the Wyoming County jail. The $296,000 HAVA (Help America Vote Act) grant was also discussed. The money will be used countywide to make all voting places and voting machines accessible to all handicapped persons. The money comes from a variety of federally approved funding streams.

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