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West Newton police may need part-time help

| Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

West Newton may be in the market for one or two part-time police officers because the borough police force may need to hire some replacements this year.

Police Chief Gary Indof told council at its workshop session on Monday that one of his part-time officers may be unavailable for several months later this year if that officer joins the Armed Forces in July, and another police department has asked for a background check on one of the borough's other officers. Indof did not reveal the identities of the officers who may be leaving the force.

Indof said he has a few applications remaining from the last time the borough advertised for part-time officers. The chief said he wants to increase the number of available part-time officers.

Mayor Mary Popovich said she would join with Indof in interviewing candidates for the part-time police officer's job.

If those applicants are no longer available to work in West Newton or are not suitable, Council President George Molovich said the borough could consider advertising for more applicants.

West Newton has six part-time police officers, and two full-time members of the force: Indof and Sgt. Tony Gillingham. Part-time officers in the borough are paid a starting wage of $10.50 per hour, said Pam Humenik, borough secretary. The part-time officers typically are scheduled for 16 hours a week, Indof said.

In other matters, the borough has not exhausted its supply of road salt this winter and received three truckloads of the material on Monday morning from Clairton Slag Inc., Humenik said.

Despite the frequent snowstorms in January, Humenik said the street department has not worked an excessive amount of overtime. During the last two weeks of January, the department accumulated 28 hours of overtime, Humenik said.

In discussing the dispatching of the street department for snow removal, Humenik said police officers on patrol have the authority to contact the borough's crews for snow removal.

Joe Napsha is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-5252 or jnapsha@tribweb.com.

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