Anthony Cioffi

City council agreed to appoint Anthony Cioffi as the new code enforcement department supervisor during its meeting Thursday.

Anthony Cioffi is back leading New Castle’s code enforcement department.

City council appoint Cioffi as the department’s supervisor. He’ll make $60,000 a year. Under Home Rule charter, Administrator Chris Frye serves as the city’s director of code enforcement and the director of community and economic development. Cioffi will serve as the working supervisor of code enforcement.

Cioffi previously served as the department’s director before Frye was elected mayor.

After the meeting, Frye said as working supervisor, Cioffi’s role will be more administrative.

Some of his duties will be to meet with the code officers daily and to help supervise them, as well as take measures to “help move the department forward.”

This includes making advancements in professional developments and technology and applying for grants.

As code director, Frye wants the department to utilize the latest advancements in technology like GIS and heat mapping to highlight the areas of the city with the most code violations.

With Cioffi’s assistance and expertise, Frye said this information would be presented to both council and the public in regular code updates.

Currently, the city has three code officers, with two vacancies. Each officer has a specific zone to patrol. Mayor Bryan Cameron said candidates were interviewed by Frye with Councilman Eric Ritter sitting in on the interviews.

Ordinances adopted

Council formally adopted an ordinance changing Reis Street to a one-way street north between East Lincoln Avenue and East Wallace Avenue between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. during school days.

This is to help with congestion concerns near New Castle Junior- Senior High School.

Deputy Mayor MaryAnne Gavrile said she wants police up there to monitor traffic, stating there is a lot of speeding near the school.

“They fly down there like it’s the Indianapolis (Motor) Speedway,” Gavrile said.

Council also adopted an ordinance that sets the salaries for mayor and city council members, which will take effect immediately.

The mayor’s salary will be $2,700 annually, while the salary for the other council members will be $2,400 annually.

Under Home Rule charter, the mayor, while still independently elected from council members, is a voting member of council, serving as its president.

Other matters

Council accepted bids for vacant lots on Lee Avenue from Urban Commonwealth CDC. Urban Commonwealth placed $500 bids on a vacant lot on North Lee Avenue and a vacant lot on West Lee Avenue.

Frye said the company will look to get Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency grants to build three different mixed income townhouse-style housing units on the West Side.

The company will need to file conditional use requests that will need to be reviewed by the city planning commission, then city council.

Council agreed to add a line item to the city budget, of $5,000, to cover commercial fire inspections, with the sum to come from the council expenses account.

Frye and Solicitor Ted Saad said city fire department members have been training to conduct inspections in the city, particularly for vacant properties downtown.

A proposal was approved to have Lawrence County Social Services Inc. provide consulting services for the city’s HOME program.

A contract was approved with Carnegie-based Meyers, Patsy & Associates LLC to perform the 2022, 2023 and 2024 city audits.

The audit of financial statements will cost $15,000 in 2022, $15,500 in 2023 and $16,000 in 2024, with a single audit, if required, costing $5,000, $5,250 and $5,500 for 2022, 2023 and 2024 respectively.

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