The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


November 19, 2013

Government shutdown looms in Northumberland County

SUNBURY — The Northumberland County commissioners meet today, and if they don’t pass the $72 million budget for 2014, the county will experience something that hasn’t happened for more than 30 years: It will shut down.

At this point, the odds favor a shutdown because Commissioners Vinny Clausi and Steve Bridy have been at war with Commissioner Rick Shoch for about two years, making the possibility of a quick agreement unlikely. The meeting is set for 1 p.m. at the county administration building.

Clausi is out of the county on business. It was not clear Monday whether he would try to attend the meeting by phone.

If the budget were passed today, there would be plenty of time for a final vote on the spending plan at the commissioners’ Dec. 27 meeting. The budget, once approved, must be advertised and available to the public for 20 days before final adoption.

The Dec. 11 meeting would push commissioners past the required 20 days of advertising and force a vote in the early part of January.

In 2012, Clausi and Shoch battled over passing of the 2013 budget, but Clausi and Bridy adopted the spending plan by 2-1 vote. Shoch was the dissenter.

Clausi has decided that this year would be different. Although he and Bridy agree on the plan put together by county budget director Jeff McClintock, Clausi told Shoch on Nov. 7 to either approve the budget, too, or draw up his own budget proposal.

“If you vote no, then so will I,” Clausi told Shoch. “I will stick with you. If you want to shut the county down, then so be it.”

The first reading of the budget then failed, with Bridy providing the only “yes” vote.

Shoch said he opposes the 2014 budget because he thinks the county’s 911 system upgrade will be costly for taxpayers and that the county made a bad deal in its lease on the human services complex off North Second Street in Sunbury.

In turn, Clausi held a press conference in July and praised county leaders for an approximately $1.8 million in savings on the lease for that complex, with millions more in savings to come, he said.

In any case, time is running out for an adoption, McClintock said on Monday.

“The last day is coming,” he said. “It’s getting close.”

Asked what a shutdown would mean, McClintock said: “My understanding is no checks will be issued. There hasn’t been anything like this during my five years here so I am not really sure, but as I understand no one will be paid.”

Some county employees will be required to work because of courthouse issues and children and youth cases, but other employees will not.

Text Only
  • Prize claim cost man $1,829

    WINFIELD — Western Union is doing what it can to educate people about the risks in wiring money. An entire section on its website ( is devoted to providing information that might reduce the risk of people falling victim to fraud schemes.

    April 19, 2014

  • Reel good time enjoyed by 200 young anglers

    TREVORTON — It only took about three minutes for J.C. Wallish to reel in his first fish at the Little Shamokin Creek Watershed Association’s annual Youth Trout Derby on Saturday.

    April 19, 2014

  • Elytte Barbour's 'bad trip' put him on the road to prison, friend says

    SUNBURY — A former roommate of slaying suspect Elytte Barbour drove 450 miles from North Carolina to spend 45 minutes in the Northumberland County Prison with his best friend last week, and was not surprised when he heard Barbour say: “I am afraid to spend the rest of my life in jail.”

    April 19, 2014

  • bonehunt20a.jpg 60 dogs battle for biscuits at annual bone hunt

    It was a scene similar to ones playing out all over the nation this weekend: nervous parents holding baskets and bags, watching their little ones search for goodies in the grass.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Arizona tribe set to prosecute first non-Indian under a new law

    PASCUA YAQUI INDIAN RESERVATION, Ariz. — Tribal police chief Michael Valenzuela drove through darkened desert streets, turned into a Circle K convenience store and pointed to the spot beyond the reservation line where his officers used to take the non-Indian men who battered Indian women.

    April 19, 2014

  • Danville parents hope strike ends quickly

    DANVILLE ““ First-grader Madison Wild was sad she missed school Thursday.

    April 19, 2014

  • Schools ask state to waive 180-day rule

    Three area school districts have asked the Pennsylvania Department of Education to add up their hours instead of their days in order to reach the required amount of instruction time in the school year.

    April 19, 2014

  • Former Bucknell star in NBA playoffs

    ATLANTA — It really hit Mike Muscala a few days ago when he was listening to the Nets’ starting lineup at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

    April 19, 2014

  • State: Discard raw milk from Greenfield Dairy

    MIDDLEBURG — Consumers should discard raw milk purchased recently from the Greenfield Dairy of Middleburg, which also has temporarily suspended production after Listeria monocytogenes was discovered in the product following routine testing, the state Department of Agriculture announced today.

    April 18, 2014

  • Penn State police: Three posed nude at Nittany shrine

    STATE COLLEGE — Penn State police say three male students who reportedly posed nude for a photo at the university’s Nittany Lion Shrine face school discipline.

    April 18, 2014

The Daily Marquee

How do you eat your chocolate Easter bunny?

Feet first
Tail first
Ears first
     View Results
Photo Galleries
The Valley


Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.