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Wayne court districts reorganized

Following a statewide initiative to downsize the municipal court system, Wayne County has reduced the number of its magisterial districts.
TRR photo by David Hulse

By Fritz Mayer
December 18, 2013

Wayne County’s Magisterial District Judge positions will be reduced by one as of the first of the year.

Following the retirement of Magistrate Jane E. Farrell at the end of this year, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ordered the consolidation of her Magisterial District Court 22-3-03 into the remaining three districts. This change follows a directive from the Supreme Court in which an assessment of population trends and comparative caseloads was completed in 2012, and counties were ordered to eliminate positions via normal attrition, i.e. retirements or deaths.

District Court Administrator Linus Myers said the unexpected retirement of 28-year incumbent Magisterial Judge Jane Farrell lent itself to the attrition directive. Farrell was originally appointment to the position in 1986 and was elected in 1988 and subsequently re-elected to four six-year terms. Farrell’s district included: Waymart and Prompton boroughs and the townships of Canaan, South Canaan, Lake and Clinton townships.

On January 1, these municipalities will be realigned into the remaining districts courts. Lake Township will be assigned to Magisterial District Judge Bonnie Carney, with offices in Hawley, Hamlin and Gouldsboro.

Waymart and Prompton boroughs and Canaan and South Canaan townships have been assigned to Magisterial Judge Ted Mikulak, with offices located in Honesdale.

Clinton Township has been assigned to District Magisterial District Judge Ronald Edwards, which is being relocated to the O’Neill Store on State Route 247 in Mount Pleasant Township.

In order to provide a more equitable distribution of workloads, other municipalities were also re-aligned. Dyberry and Berlin townships and Bethany borough move from Mikulak’s court to Edwards.

Maps of the former districts and realigned districts can be viewed on the Wayne County website at www.co.wayne.pa.us, click on “Departments,” “Court of Common Pleas” and then “Maps” at bottom of the Common Pleas page. Any questions or concerns may be directed to Myers at 570/253-0101.

Commissioners’ meeting

At their meeting on December 12, the county commissioners acted on Wayne County Judge Raymond Hamill’s notification of the closing of Farrell’s office, which authorized their ending the clerk’s position held by Carol English.

They also: approved solicitation of interest-rate quotes for a tax anticipation note, this year in the amount of $2 million; awarded an $82,000 contract to the low bidder, Pioneer Construction, for the replacement of the sewage grinder at the correctional facility.