Council Discharges Treasurer After 30 Years, Hires Local Realtor as Part-Time Replacement
MOUNT POCONO - Usually after 30-years of service, an employee gets a nice watch, a plaque, or at least a sheet cake.
But not in Mount Pocono under the Penn-Williams rule. Here, they get fired.
Three weeks after they appeared in Harrisburg to answer unfair labor practice charges filed by the Teamsters union relating to how they treated Lori and Dennis Noonan, Michael Penn, the interim Mount Pocono mayor filling out Fred Courtright’s term, and Claudette Williams, a six-year council member, and current council president, conducted a “special meeting” at Noon on November 27 - three days after a scheduled meeting - to remove Lori Noonan from the position she has held for over three decades. They replaced her with Pocono Lake real estate agent Danielle Hewitt, who recently relocated to Monroe County from East Vincent Township in Chester County, where she had a dairy farm and served as treasurer for West Vincent Township before retirement and relocation to the Poconos.
Challenged by some of the residents attending the meeting to explain their actions, Williams said they thought it was a good idea to separate the jobs of borough secretary and treasurer. (Noonan still has the borough secretary title, although she has been reduced to part-time, her health benefits were canceled, and they took her office away.)
Earlier this year, after her husband was abruptly terminated at the mayor’s direction following an extended executive session, council member Fran O’Boyle was heard after that meeting telling residents that the council was “out to get Lori”. He did not explain why. O’Boyle was the only council member to vote against the actions (council member Aida Montanez was absent).
Although Hewitt was ostensibly hired on a part-time basis, the resolution provided that she would work full-time through the end of the year in order to assist council with budget preparations, which had not yet begun at the time of the meeting. Her compensation was set at $25 an hour. Council estimated that after year-end she would be working 20 hours a week.